May 22, 2018

Congo’s Sassou Nguesso seeks new term after 32 years in office

Congo’s Sassou Nguesso seeks new term after 32 years in office

Congo’s President Denis Sassou Nguesso will seek re-election Sunday after 32 years at the helm of an oil-rich but impoverished nation which is clamouring for jobs and decent living standards.

One of Africa’s five longest-serving leaders, the 72-year-old former paratrooper colonel is running for a new term after an October vote modified the constitution, removing a 70-year age limit and two-term barrier to enable him to extend his rule.

The changes were approved in a referendum by 94.3 percent, which the opposition dubbed it “a constitutional coup” and protests erupted in the run-up to the vote that left several people dead.

But in down at heel Makelekele and Bacongo, southern parts of the capital where opposition support is strong, residents say Sassou Nguesso has failed to make good on his last election pledges and question why this round of promises would play out any differently. Read more

 

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