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Niger wager

May 26, 2009

two terms? he's just getting warmed upSo, how is Niger doing?

Niger’s President, Mamadou Tandja, has dissolved the uranium-rich country’s parliament a day after his bid for a third term in office was ruled illegal.

All right then. How very much like Algeria, and yet how very much unlike Algeria.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 27, 2009 11:24

    Unfortunate timing, just after the first steps towards cease-fire with some of the groups in the north.

  2. May 27, 2009 18:21

    I would have to go with the “how unlike Algeria”, given my imperfect understanding of Algeria. Tandja was within his rights to both dissolve the Assembly and ignore the Constitutional Court (they are just supposed to “advise” on his right to call a referendum). And the political class is not only not cowed, Tandja likely dissolved the Assembly because even his allies opposed this referendum on a new constitution, and he wouldn’t have the votes to survive a censure motion. I worry if he hasn’t crossed a rubicon which may drive him to some proper unconstitutional moves.

    As to the Tuaregs: remember they seem to heart Baré Maïnassara (there used to be a picture of him on the MNJ page; I just saw a publicity snap from 1997 of el heffe joshing with a smiling with Mano Dayak), and Baré’s old party is the only one outside Tandja’s that supports the referendum. The Assembly opposition are no more friends of the rebels than Tandja. If Tandja can spin this as a return to the man on the horse who alone can do the things that need to be done, the (ex)rebel leaders may play along.

    And I just saw this smart-ass comment (by someone called “Bella”, no less) on <a href=""TamTam:

    “Tous les nigériens sont aujourd’hui plus que jamais mobilisé contre le dictateur tanja sauf les touaregs de l’azawak, particulièrement ceux d’Abalak. Bizarre non?’

  3. May 28, 2009 14:44

    Interesting. Despite trying hard to give another impression in the post above, I really don’t know anything about Niger, so this is very welcome info.


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