Court clears Ouattara bid for 3rd term as Ivory Coast president
Johannesburg - Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara has been granted permission by the constitutional council to seek a third term in next month’s election, according to BNN Bloomberg.
The channel also reported that the candidacy of two other prominent leaders was rejected by the council.
The council barred ex-speaker of parliament and former rebel leader Guillaume Soro, as well as Laurent Gbagbo, Ouattara’s predecessor, BNN Bloomberg reported.
The constitution says the president may only stay in power for two terms, but Ouattara has argued that the publication of a new constitution in 2016 reset his presidency status.
“A judicial debate took place in a transparent manner. The constitutional council has settled the debate and I think Ivorians will do well to comply with this decision, to respect the decision and the authority from which it came,” said Ouattara’s lawyer, Abdoulaye Ben Meite.
Ouattara stated early this year that he would hand power over to a younger generation of leaders but reversed the decision in July after the death of his successor, Amadou Gon Coulibaly.
Ouattara said he would run again because of the challenges the country faced and in order to maintain peace and order in Ivory Coast.
Violent protests have spread since Ouattara, who has been in power since 2010, announced his candidacy for the upcoming elections.
More than a dozen people have died in clashes between protesters and police since August.
The Mail Online reports that the constitutional council has thus far approved only four of the 44 candidates for the October 31 presidential election.
The other candidates cleared include former president Henri Konan Bedie from the historically dominant Parti Démocratique de la Côte d'Ivoire (PDCI), Gbagbo's former prime minister Pascal Affi N'Guessan, and Kouadio Konan Bertin, a dissident from Bedie's party.
African News Agency (ANA)