World/Foreign News

Presidential Election: Vote to end Military rule

Chadians vote for a president on Monday in an election purportedly aimed at ending military rule but dismissed by opponents of junta leader, Mahamat Idriss Deby, as a fix following violent repression.

Originally scheduled for October 2022, the election was postponed, sparking protests quashed by security forces.

The vote marks the Sahel region’s first presidential election since a series of coups. Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno, despite facing a spirited opponent, holds favor for victory. He pledges security, law enforcement, and energy enhancements.

The election coincides with a temporary U.S. troop withdrawal from Chad, an ally crucial to the West. Polling begins at 7 a.m. with 8.5 million registered voters.

Early voting by soldiers precedes the main election day.

Provisional results are due by May 21, final by June 5. A runoff is slated for June 22 if no candidate secures over 50% of the vote.

Since assuming power, Déby maintains ties with France. While neighboring Sahel nations pivot towards Moscow, Chad retains significant French military presence.

The U.S. recently announced temporary troop withdrawals, citing a security review post-election.

International human rights groups have warned the election will not be free or fair as Deby’s main rival has been killed and others banned from standing.

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