Former President Wade

Senegal’s former President Abdoulaye Wade has called for this month’s elections to be cancelled over fears they could lead to instability.

Wade, who lives in France but is due to return to Senegal this week, called on Senegalese to embark on peaceful protests.

The 92-year-old is a fierce critic of President Macky Sall, who is seeking a second term.

Wade’s son, Karim, was barred from standing because of a previous corruption conviction.

The former mayor of Dakar, Khalifa Sall, who had also been viewed as a potentially strong contender in the election, was jailed for fraud last year.

The governing party denies that their trials were politically motivated.

Senegal is going to the polls on February 24 in the first round of general elections with seven candidates shortlisted for the presidential vote.

The Constitutional Council on January 8, 2019 approved six candidates to run against incumbent President Macky Sall.

In a report last year, Amnesty International criticized the Senegalese government for cracking down on peaceful demonstrations and said the judiciary handling Khalifa’s case “showed a lack of independence”.

Senegalese inside the country and in the Diaspora are mobilized to bring the international community’s attention to the situation they characterize as “democracy in danger” and are calling all stakeholders to help sustain Senegal’s democracy by ensuring the independence of the justice system, allowing all political candidates to contest and by conducting a transparent, free and fair election.

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