Chad opposition leader quits presidential race after shoot-out

The opponent Saleh Kebzabo announced Monday, March 1 his withdrawal from the presidential race of April 11. He denounced an “obvious militarization of the political climate” following the violent clashes that took place at the home of candidate Yaya Dillo.
Second in 2016, Saleh Kebzabo denounced a few days ago the government’s refusal to reimburse his campaign expenses in the previous election. In addition to this situation and several elements that do not bode well for a transparent election, violence at the home of a candidate, Yaya Dillo, is the one element too many that encourages the Chadian opponent to withdraw from the race, according to the Chadian opponent.
“Horrible, barbaric things have happened. You can’t behave in a country like a jungle. The army landed at the house of our colleague, the presidential candidate, for having committed the crime of lese-majesty of being a candidate. And we killed his mother, which is inadmissible».
“In 25 years of elections in Chad, there has never been an incident of such magnitude and severity. And for which the state is primarily responsible, because it was presidential troops who went to a candidate’s home to try to assassinate him. This is really stronger than anything else».
Faced with this climate, the opponent therefore decided to withdraw from the race. “It’s no longer an election, it’s become a kind of Wild West where you shoot to eliminate before you even go to the campaign. What will happen during the campaign and after the campaign? We felt that we couldn’t continue under these conditions and we withdrew».
Saleh Kebzabo believes that this affair is also the “clear sign” that the country is heading for “a false election”. But other elements were already pointing to a “masquerade” presidential election, according to him.
“We published a memorandum, about twelve points on which Céni had to organize a meeting with the candidates to effectively commit to remove all obstacles to go to transparent and peaceful elections. To date, we have received no reaction. There has been no response from Céni, the government or the Supreme Court. This means that all these people have united against the Republic to wring the neck of democracy. So, all of this is a masquerade. We let them continue, they can do whatever they want. For the rest, God save Chad».

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Khalid Al Mouahidi : A binational from the US and Morocco, Khalid El Mouahidi has worked for several american companies in the Maghreb Region and is currently based in Casablanca, where he is doing consulting jobs for major international companies . Khalid writes analytical pieces about economic ties between the Maghreb and the Mena Region, where he has an extensive network