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ECOWAS worries over political situation in in Senegal

Worried by the political situation in Senegal, the Economic Community of West African States’ Commission (ECOWAS Commission), has urged the political class in the country to urgently restore the electoral calendar in accordance with the country’s constitution.

The bloc made the appeal on Wednesday in Abuja, saying that the Commission of ECOWAS follows with concern the unfolding of situation in Senegal.

ECOWAS advised against any action or statement that may contravene the provisions of the country’s Constitution.

The bloc reminded the population and the political class of their responsibility to maintain peace and stability in the country.

“The ECOWAS Commission encourages the political class to take steps urgently to restore the electoral calendar in accordance with the provisions of Senegal’s Constitution.

“In these trying times for the country and the region, the Commission calls on all stakeholders to shun violence and all other actions that may further disturb the peace and stability of the country,” it stated.

Furthermore, the bloc urges the law enforcement agencies of the country to exercise utmost restraint and protect the fundamental rights of all citizens.

ECOWAS Commission would continue to monitor the unfolding of events and would take all necessary steps to support the government and people of Senegal in their efforts to sustain the country’s democratic tradition.

President Macky Sall of Senegal had postponed the February 25 presidential and general election due to some unresolved candidacy

The decision follows, among other things, the dispute between their candidate and the Constitutional Council, accused of corruption by the former ruling party.

Several opposition figures rejected President Sall’s decision to postpone the election, with at least two of the 20 presidential candidates saying they would proceed with their campaign scheduled to kick off on Sunday.

Sall’s tenure is scheduled to end on April 2. Senegal’s electoral code requires 80 days’ notice of an election, meaning the earliest a new vote could take place is the last week of April.

In postponing the election, Sall cited a dispute between the judiciary and federal lawmakers over the disqualification process and the reported dual nationality of some qualified candidates.

His announcement followed a request to postpone the vote made by the opposition Senegalese Democratic Party, whose candidate Karim Wade was among those disqualified.

Wade had accused two judges of corruption in the disqualification process and said that postponing the vote would “make it possible to repair the damage suffered” by those disqualified.

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