Technocrat named as Senegal’s premier

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Dakar - Senegal's President Macky Sall on Sunday appointed Mohammed Dionne as prime minister, state television RTS reported, following the sacking last week of Aminata Toure after she failed to win a seat in a June 29 local election.

Dionne, 55, who had previous stints at the Central Bank of West African States and the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, was minister in charge of the implementation of Senegal's $7.98 billion development plan in the previous government.

“The head of state gave me and government of the Republic a road map that can be broken down into few words... get to work,” Dionne said briefly on state television after meeting with the president late on Sunday.

Dionne, a computer engineer by training, is President Sall's third prime minister since he won a hotly contested election in March 2012 against veteran incumbent Abdoulaye Wade, promising to tackle poverty and corruption as a priority.

Sall has come under criticism from many voters who say his policies aimed at tackling corruption and improving governance in one of West Africa's most stable democracies have failed to provide jobs and economic growth in the former French colony of 13 million people.

Dionne's appointment may open the way for the government to speed up the reform process and attempt to create more jobs ahead of elections set for 2017. - Reuters

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