Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Niger's president dissolves top court

Niger's president dissolves top court

Niger's president issued a decree dissolving the country's constitutional court which earlier rejected his call to change the constitution so as to allow him to run for a third term.
The decree signed by President Mamadou Tandja Monday calls for the appointment of a new court, this one composed of seven members, three of whom will be appointed by him and a fourth who will be appointed in consultation with him.
The events are the latest in the country's ongoing power struggle as Tandja nears the end of his second, five-year term. According to the constitution, he must step down. But Tandja has been trying to impose a referendum, which would allow voters a chance to change the law so as to allow him a third term.
The constitutional court ruled that his plan for a referendum was illegal.
Also on Monday, the private radio station "Dounia" was shut down by the government after broadcasting an appeal to the country's army to stop obeying Tandja. Soon after, the armed forces released a statement saying that they remain neutral in the face of the country's political impasse.
After decades of strongman rule, Africa's experiment with democracy is still young. Often even democratically elected leaders _ like Tandja _ find it difficult to cede power at the end of their constitutionally-delineated term. A common strategy for staying in power is trying to change the constitution, either to allow an extra term or else to extend the length of each period in office.


Updated : 2021-06-23 20:59 GMT+08:00