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Could Idriss Déby Itno’s 30 years in power come to an end?

Chadian President Idriss Déby Itno, who has ruled since 1990, is gearing up to take on his sixth mandate as head of state.

Photo: Chad's President Idriss Deby Itno addresses the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, 25 September 2019. Copyright The Africa Report

Elections are scheduled for 11 April 2021. And the country’s 2018 constitution allows him to stay in office, if elected, until 2033. Déby is an experienced military man who first joined the army in the 1970s during the former French colony’s civil war. He eventually became commander in chief of the armed forces under former president Hissène Habré who served from 1982 to 1990.

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During a press conference on Monday in N'Djamena, Chad at the headquarters of the Transformateurs party of opposition leader Dr Succès Masra, he described the upcoming April 11 election as a masquerade. Accusing the regime of abuse, he presented the media with the remnants of ammunition that were fired by police at the political site.

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It is a crushing victory and an unsurprising one. At the end of the first round of the presidential election held on Sunday 21 March, Denis Sassou Nguesso was re-elected for a fourth term as the head of Congo with 88.57% of the vote, according to provisional results announced on Tuesday by Raymond Zephirin Mboulou, the Minister of Interior. The turnout was 67.55%.

Leading opposition candidate says he’s ‘fighting death’ after being diagnosed with COVID-19 on eve of presidential election.

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