Senegal Postpones Election Until December

    Senegal Postpones Election Until December
    Photo: Xaume Olleros/Contributor/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • Senegal’s presidential election has been pushed to Dec. 15 after the country’s parliament voted to delay it on Monday. The election was originally slated for Feb. 25, but on Saturday, Pres. Macky Sall announced a postponement that prompted violent protests.

    • Sall’s bill initially sought to delay the election until Aug. 25, but it was later amended to Dec. 15, passing through the 165-seat Assembly with 105 votes. The Senegalese president — who has served his constitutional limit of two terms and isn't up for re-election — cited a dispute over the candidate list and alleged corruption within the Constitutional Council, which manages the candidate selection process.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    Once considered an example of democracy in West Africa, Senegal is seeing an erosion of its democratic institutions as Pres. Sall postpones this year’s presidential election. In addition to his undemocratic decision to stay in power longer than his term allows him, Sall’s government has deployed riot police to teargas dissenters and has restricted internet access. Senegal must hold a free and fair election as scheduled, and Sall must leave when his term ends.

    Narrative B

    Pres. Sall put any speculation about running for a third term to bed months ago, and he made the difficult decision to move Senegal’s election in order to protect candidates who were unfairly removed from the candidate list. Sall has no desire to serve beyond his two terms and is only looking to strengthen Senegalese democracy for future generations. The president is committed to being transparent in everything he does, and his decision will allow voters to pick the candidate of their choice without bureaucratic meddling.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 10% chance that Senegal will experience a successful coup d’etat before 2040, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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