DAOUKRO, IVORY COAST - Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara's governing coalition appeared to split on Monday when a junior partner said it was pulling out after months of feuds.
The support of the PDCI party of former President Henri Konan Bedie was critical to Ouattara's run-off victory in the 2010 presidential election and his re-election in 2015.
"The political bureau has decided to withdraw," from the coalition, said PDCI spokesman Narcisse N'Dri.
A recent rift, exacerbated in part by a Ouattara cabinet reshuffle in July, strained relations and put the coalition at risk ahead of local elections next month and a presidential election in 2020.
It also threatens to aggravate instability in Ivory Coast, where a tenuous stability has held since a brief civil war in 2010-11 that killed 3,000 people. Since then the economy has grown rapidly.
Now, Bedie is looking for other allies, which could weaken Ouattara's RDR party further.
"The Political Bureau mandates President Bedie, to start negotiations for the establishment of a platform for collaboration with Ivorians who share his vision of a reconciled and peaceful Ivory Coast," N'Dri said.