News / Africa

CAR Leaders to Elect Interim President Monday

CAR Leaders to Elect Interim President Mondayi
X
January 17, 2014 6:35 AM
Political leaders in the Central African Republic have agreed on guidelines for replacing interim president Michel Djotodia, who was forced to resign last week after failing to stop the violence.
CAR Leaders to Elect Interim President Monday
Nick Long
Political leaders in strife-torn Central African Republic have agreed on guidelines for replacing interim president Michel Djotodia, who was forced to resign last week.
 
The transitional national council says people have until mid-day Saturday to submit names of possible candidates, who will then be evaluated on Sunday.
 
The group says it plans to elect the new interim leader on Monday.
 
The transition council announced new candidacy guidelines on Thursday, following talks in the capital, Bangui. According to the announcement, political, military and militia leaders are banned from consideration, which rules out many individuals involved in CAR politics.
 
Controversially, former ministers of the transitional government, which took power in the middle of last year, along with members of the transitional parliament formed at the same time, are also excluded.
 
The nation’s senior Muslim cleric, Imam Omar Kobine Layama, is one of many people who told VOA they approve of this condition.
 
"People who managed the transition in the government of the outgoing president Michel Djotodia for nearly a year, and who brought the country to its knees, [should not] be candidates to succeed him," he said.
 
The transitional national council is also requiring that all candidates be citizens of CAR, are at least 35 years old, and hold no criminal record or history of mismanaging public office.
 
The group did say that political leaders presently banned from consideration for the interim presidency may seek candidacy in CAR's 2015 presidential election.
 
International observers
 
International observers view the restrictive criteria as crucial to ensuring broad support for the interim leader while safeguarding the country against more chaos or even genocide.
 
Senior U.N. official John Ging, operations director for the organization's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, warned Thursday that seeds of genocide are present in the country.
 
Waiting at parliament Thursday, people such as Maitre Bernard Kutu, a lawyer, carried dossiers on would-be candidates.
 
"I know Central Africans, and they are very keen on running for the presidency and there will be a flood of candidates," said Zutu. "Fortunately the criteria will rule out some power-hungry people who are completely worthless as national leaders."
 
Although no candidates have been verified, rumors of potential nominees are have been circulating, and VOA has learned of four people who have reportedly expressed an intention to seek the interim presidency, including Xavier Sylvestre Yangongo, a former general and minister in several governments; Charles Armel Doubanem, a former ambassador to the United Nations; Bangui Mayor Catherine Samba Panza; and General James Gaston Gamboa.
 
Observers say the parliament was still debating Thursday whether to add more conditions that could rule out potential candidates — for example, a ban on active-duty military officers.
 
Much of CAR's recent violence has involved targeted attacks on Muslim or Christian civilians, a new occurrence for a country that has a history of political unrest but not violent religious persecution.
 
U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power, said Thursday the U.S. government is working to help the African Union peacekeeping force in the CAR reach its full strength as quickly as possible. The U.S. has airlifted Burundian troops to the CAR and will soon also be helping Rwandan troops to deploy there.
 
CAR descended into chaos after mostly Muslim Seleka rebels overthrew President Francois Bozize last March, replacing with Djotodia, the Christian majority country's first Muslim leader.
 
Djotodia resigned last week under intense pressure from regional leaders after failing to stop violence that has killed more than 1,000 people over the past month and displaced more than one million over the past year.
 
Much of the recent violence has involved the ex-Seleka rebels and Christian militias known as anti-balaka.

You May Like

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportionali
X
Aru Pande
December 19, 2014 1:45 AM
The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportional

The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid