Chad: Polls closed as Idris Deby set to win another mandate

Polling stations are closed in Chad as voters seek to extend another six-year mandate for the incumbent President Idris Deby, who has been at the helm since 1991, when he took power through a military coup.

 

Debby cast his vote today around 7:30 am in a local polling station in N’djamena while expressing hope that he would be re-elected for another six years in the Sahel region, known to be home to Jihadists and other terrorist groups.

 

He told reporters that he would continue to fight against terrorism and create more jobs if reelected.

Based on the country’s constitution, he was not to seek another term. Still, he thwarted the constitution to give him legitimacy to seek his sixth mandate despite a series of protests organized by opposition leaders.

On Saturday, scores of people were arrested by the military accused of plotting to assassinate top politicians and members of the electoral commission. 

 

Some major opposition parties whose files were accepted by the electoral commission to run announced boycotts of the election, stating that the results had already been known ahead of time. Others boycotted over the fear of being targeted by Deby’s soldiers.

 

A former minister, now an opposition and main rival to Deby, was arrested. His mother and three family members were killed in February by Deby’s soldiers.

7.3 million people registered to vote. However, the turnout was low in some key opposition areas that responded to the call to boycott.

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