Saturday, April 20, 2024
30.2 C
City of Banjul
HomeBreaking NewsSENEGAL: THE UNCERTAIN POLITICAL FUTURE OF OUSMANE SONKO

SENEGAL: THE UNCERTAIN POLITICAL FUTURE OF OUSMANE SONKO

Donate to Freedom Radio Today

Forwarded by: Salieu Njie

Forty degrees of fever, vomiting, loss of consciousness and intensive care. The report from the head doctor of the prison administration, dated October 24, concerning the state of health of Senegalese opponent Ousmane Sonko, is more worrying than what the authorities had previously let appear. Arrested at the end of July, notably for calling for insurrection and endangering state security, the detainee resumed his hunger strike on October 17 to contest his incarceration, after having already been admitted to intensive care in August .

According to the correspondence of Colonel Abdoulaye Diagne, director of the prison administration, addressed to the Minister of Justice, Aïssata Tall Sall, which leaked Thursday October 26 to the press, he “makes delusional and incoherent comments”. The same evening, the public prosecutor reacted by announcing in a press release the opening of an investigation “to identify the authors of this publication”“In addition to the violation of the detainee’s rights, these particularly serious facts constitute a whole range of offenses relating to the dissemination of personal data. »

“Catastrophic” state of health

“These communications make it possible to establish that the Senegalese authorities are informed in every detail of their situation (…). We warn the leaders of Senegal: their responsibility is engaged. In the event of an “incident”, there will be no impunity”spoke on October 26 on X (formerly Twitter) his French lawyer, Juan Branco.

“The State does not dispute the content of this document. This means that he was aware of Ousmane Sonko’s catastrophic state of health.adds Me Bamba Cissé, lawyer for the leader of the African Patriots of Senegal for work, ethics and fraternity (Pastef), dissolved on July 31. Reacting to the prosecutor’s press release, the council considers that “the question of the investigation is a counter-fire”“My client does not ask for his personal data to be protected by the State”he insisted.

Read also: In Senegal, the government dissolves the party of opponent Ousmane Sonko, two deaths in demonstrations

Lawyers and relatives of Ousmane Sonko have been warning about his state of health for several days already. Me Ciré Clédor Ly announced on October 23 that he had fallen into a coma before regaining consciousness the same day. “I have a special permit to go see Ousmane Sonko, but I was not able to visit him given his fragile state of health”testifies Amadou Ba, member of the opponent’s cabinet.

Avalanche of legal proceedings

Candidate for the presidential election in February 2024, Ousmane Sonko accuses the president, Macky Sall, of wanting to exclude him from the vote through repeated legal proceedings. Sentenced to two years in prison for “corruption of youth” in his absence, on 1er June, the leader of Pastef was removed from the electoral lists. The decision was annulled by a judgment of the court of Ziguinchor, a city in the south of the country of which he is mayor, but this annulment has not yet been applied. The general directorate of elections still refuses to distribute his sponsorship forms, used to collect the signatures necessary to validate a candidacy, judging that the decision is not “not definitive”since the State’s lawyers filed an appeal before the Supreme Court.

Read also: In Senegal, justice revives Ousmane Sonko in the presidential race

Another sword of Damocles hangs over Ousmane Sonko’s head: the Supreme Court must soon rule definitively on his six-month suspended prison sentence handed down on appeal of the defamation trial brought by the Minister of Tourism, Mame Mbaye Niang, which could cause him to lose his civil rights.

“King or kingmaker”

Despite these difficulties, Birame Khoudia Lo, deputy secretary general of Pastef, maintains that Ousmane Sonko remains their one and only party candidate for the presidential election of February 2024. “We are fighting to have the sponsorship forms, because he was unjustly and arbitrarily arrested and removed from the electoral rolls. He will be king or kingmaker”he continues, while ensuring that the party “has no plan B”.

Five other members of Pastef have however collected sponsorship forms, including El Malick Ndiaye, Abass Fall, Birame Souleye Diop, Bassirou Diomaye Faye and Guy Marius Sagna, MP currently on tour in Europe. None of them have declared themselves candidates, but they could theoretically take the plunge if the party changed strategy.

Read also: In Senegal, the sponsorship race for the 2024 presidential election officially opened

For the moment, Pastef is asking its supporters to keep their sponsorships and wait for instructions, until all possible recourses are exhausted to restore his civil rights to Ousmane Sonko with a view to participating in the presidential election. “Even if another candidate represents Pastef in 2024, it will be a transitional candidate and president. From the hospital, Ousmane Sonko gives his instructions, which we respect”believes Baba, a young activist from Pastef, for whom Guy Marius Sagna would be the most legitimate alternative solution.

Latest articles

GAMBIA: THE POLICE MUST NOT UNDERMINE DEMOCRACY AND THE CONSTITUTION

It is once again tragic that the Gambia Police Force has decided to undermine...

GAMBIA: MEMBERS OF THE CEMENT IMPORTERS AND TRADERS CALL TO ACTION GAMBIA: IMPORT DUTY MADNESS AND POLITICAL FAVOURITISM

Dear Gambians, We are reaching out to Gambians to shed light on a concerning policy...

GAMBIA: ABDOULIE JAWO REACTS TO THE OVER D 40 MILLION GOVERNMENT BRIBERY SELECTIVE MEDIA PLATFORMS

Domination through the Military under Jammeh to Domination through the Treasury under Barrow* It is...

GAMBIA: 7 MEDIA HOUSES CONTRACTED ABOUT D40 MILLION TO PROMOTE GOVERNMENT AGENDA

An amount of 40 Million Dalasis has been approved by the government for the...

More like this

GAMBIA: THE POLICE MUST NOT UNDERMINE DEMOCRACY AND THE CONSTITUTION

It is once again tragic that the Gambia Police Force has decided to undermine...

GAMBIA: MEMBERS OF THE CEMENT IMPORTERS AND TRADERS CALL TO ACTION GAMBIA: IMPORT DUTY MADNESS AND POLITICAL FAVOURITISM

Dear Gambians, We are reaching out to Gambians to shed light on a concerning policy...

GAMBIA: ABDOULIE JAWO REACTS TO THE OVER D 40 MILLION GOVERNMENT BRIBERY SELECTIVE MEDIA PLATFORMS

Domination through the Military under Jammeh to Domination through the Treasury under Barrow* It is...