Mauritania ruling party moves to ‘retire’ ex-president

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Mauritania’s ruling party is looking to shake off what political analysts see as domination attempts by former president Mohamed Ould Abdul Aziz.

The ruling party met in a special congress to elect a new leadership loyal to the new president Mohamed Ould Cheikh El Ghazouani, a move seen as removing his predecessor Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz from the political scene.

A ruling party activist said the new president had full support of the party, “We’ve never seen this kind of mobilization in other conventions. It already shows the interest that these congressmen have in their party, in the various reforms they expect from this party.

“They want to transcribe the will of the President of the Republic Mohamed Cheikh Ghazouani, which is a will to gather people together,” Fatimatou Abdelkadir said.

Ould Abdel Aziz had sparked controversy across Mauritania after chairing a meeting of the ruling party in November, a move that politicians criticised and described as “domination attempt.”

He came to power in a military coup in 2008. He was twice elected president in 2009 and 2013 but did not run for the last presidential elections in June, choosing to respect term limits. The election was won by Mohamed Ould Ghazouani.

 

Dominica Nwabufo