Algeria: Tebboune likely to win second term


Despite political uncertainty and dissatisfaction in Algeria, President Abdelmadjid Tebboune winning a second term in office is “highly likely”, The Associated Press (AP) reported on February 14. 

Tebboune,78, became President in 2019 in a conclusive election victory, seeing off nationalist candidate Abdelkader Bengrina. The resignation of long-serving, late President Abdelaziz Bouteflika triggered a poll in December that year. 

A presidential election is expected to take place in December this year however no candidate has stepped up to the election plate as of yet. Even Mr Tebboune himself has yet to declare if he will seek another term or not. 

In late 2023, the Algerian head bizarrely invited opposition leaders at the Algiers-based Mouradia Palace for formal talks. Something of the kind hasn’t occurred in the country and some political experts argued it was a posturing tactic given that an election is on the cards. 

Amidst political and economic challenges, centre-left opposition party The Rally for Culture and Democracy called on the government to “put in place political conditions for a debate to find a way out of crisis.” 

READ: Algerian President bizarrely sends out invitations to opposition

Army General Said Chengriha has been goading Tebboune on, speaking positively on the “the projects implemented over the past four years” as well as endorsing “the continuation of this work.” 

Amnesty International amongst other human rights organisations have raised concerns about the country taking an authoritarian route, much like neighbouring Tunisia, under Tebboune’s leadership. 

Since 2019, political dissidents have felt the full force of the law, media outlets critical of the government, Radio M and Maghreb Emergent have been shut down and Kabylian separatist movement MAK have often been met with disdain. 

Just as recently as last month, the Movement for the Self-Determination of Kabylie (often referred to as “MAK”) were convicted of belonging to a terrorist organisation as well as “undermining state security”. 

Also in the past four years, Algeria has faced dire economic issues such as inflation, high unemployment rates and food shortages and despite the government’s planned reforms, significant development hasn’t occurred besides from in major cities.  

Despite the collection of crises which has put Tebboune under intense pressure, it is believed that widespread voter apathy will be beneficial to the President come December (should an election take place then). 



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