February 27, 2024

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Fresh clashes between protesters and police in Dakar

Fresh clashes between protesters and police in Dakar

There was tension in the capital Dakar this Friday, February 9. Fresh clashes broke out between the demonstrators and the police. This call to protest against the postponement of the presidential election appears arbitrary. 14 presidential candidates today filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking cancellation of the President's order regarding the postponement of the election.

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De la Nation, where the meeting was announced, has been cordoned off. Barricades, pick-ups and armored vehicles… a huge police force has been deployed, making it impossible to approach the place. And in the suburbs, clashes broke out in adjacent streets, especially in the districts of Kolabane and Madina, where police tear gas canisters, youths pelting stones and burning tires on one side, our special reports. Correspondent in Dakar, Charlotte Eyetrack.

Young people who claim their right to protest are angry and very determined. These are mobile groups, and we cannot strictly speak of a crowd. ” Macky Saul betrayed us, Macky Saul lied to us “, said one of them with a mask over his eyes, with a flag in the colors of Senegal, green, yellow, red.”Mackie Saul, the dictator», started another. Some even say they regret the absence of opposition leaders from the ground.

The call for a demonstration this afternoon seems arbitrary. It was widely circulated on social media, but it was not formally launched by any party or organisation.

There, black smoke billows around the Place de la Nation. Many streets are blocked, many businesses have closed their doors and the situation is very volatile. A tense situation prevails in the Dhaka area as the police attacked the journalists as well.

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The 14 candidates for the election scheduled for this Friday, February 25, have appealed to the Supreme Court seeking the annulment of President Mackey Sall's order postponing the election. “An illegal order“, according to them.

Mobilizing on the streets, but also on the legal front

14 presidential candidates have filed an appeal to overturn President Mackey Sall's order postponing the presidential election. They consider it illegal because in their opinion it violates the powers of the President. So the Supreme Court is aiming to overturn it, reports our correspondent in Dakar. Leah-Lisa Westerhoff.

We hope for a final burst of justice to reconcile the people», commented candidate Habib Sai, one of the 14 opponents who referred the matter to the court.

The problem is that the Supreme Court has no time frame to rule. To quicken the pace, the candidates will begin the emergency procedure on Monday, February 12, as the scheduled date for the presidential election is set for February 25, and the race against time has begun.

At the same time, the Constitutional Council was contacted yesterday by about fifty opposition representatives against the law passed by the National Assembly on Monday and postponing the presidential election until December 15. These elected officials believe the text violates the Constitution and specifically the articles that locked in the number and duration of the presidential decree.

The whole question now is whether the Constituent Assembly has the power to enact this law. In Senegal, the country's future rests in the hands of the Constitutional Council and the Supreme Court, these protesters believe.

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To protest the postponement of the presidential election until December 15, the “Protect Our Elections” coalition has called for people to wear white to Friday prayers. A relatively well-attended call at a mosque in the city center, very close to President Mackey's residence.

Reactions in front of a mosque in the city center, very close to President Mackey's residence

Leah-Lisa Westerhoff

Read morePresidential election in Senegal: Debate on competence of Constitutional Council continues