All hands On Deck

A few months from now, Senegal will for the first time be producing her first barrel of petrol. The exploitation of the oil refinery might not be a major reason for tension in the country, but can one way or the other influence the political agitation in the country. In Senegal, one of the models of democracy in Africa, one would have expected that issues of constitution and electoral law should be a debate of the past. Helas! After three successful peaceful transfers of power from Abdou Diof to Abdoulaye Wade and Wade to Macky Sall, it needed a lot of bloodshed and international pressure for the incumbent to announce his intention not to run. Though, his decision not to run for a third term came as a sigh of relief to many, it has however not cleared the moody political atmosphere in the country. 
On July 28, the leader of Patriots of Senegal for Work, Ethics, and Fraternity Party (PASTEF) was arrested and on July 31, 2023, the party was dissolved for rallying its supporters during violent protests in June this year and in March 2021. On the same day, the government also restricted access to mobile data internet services to stop what it called the spread of “hateful and subversive” messages on social media. Since then, hundreds of Senegalese have taken to the streets to protest. The violence that has led to at least 16 deaths, including two members of the security forces, scores of others injured and over 500 people across Senegal arrested is largely enough for each and every stakeholder to come on board.
At this juncture, whether government or opposition, it is time to turn a deaf ear against instigators of violence. It is true that the go...



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