Welcome to Africanews

Please select your experience

Watch Live



Senegal gearing up for 2024 elections with front runners undecided yet

President of Senegal Macky Sall arrives for talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Monday, March 31, 2014.   -  
Copyright © africanews
Markus Schreiber/AP


Senegal is gearing up for the 2024 presidential election. But the fate of opposition politician Ousmane Sonko, sentenced to two years in prison for corrupting young people, is still causing tensions. For many Senegalese, President Macky Sall's decision not to run for a 3rd term is not enough. Wahany Sambo, Africanews correspondent in Dakar took the views of some Senegalese.

"Now that he says he won't be a candidate, it's not up to him to tell us who will and who won't be. It's up to the people now to decide, and I think that in order to have a peaceful climate, we need to let everyone take part.

"It's not a question of pardoning Karim Wade or Khalifa Sall, but of everyone taking part in these elections, since the President has said he will not run. So he has to let the others run. But if only one candidate is left out, that will be a problem.

Karim Wade and Khalifa Sall, both of whom were eliminated in the voter register 2019, are expected to be readmitted in the electoral rolls by 2024. A probability that could upset the balance of power. There is one question, however: the timing of preparations for the election. But the head of Khalifa Sall's Takhawu Sénégal is reassuring.

"In reality, like all political parties, the ambition of the Takhawu Sénégal platform has always been to take part in elections, including the presidential election, to win elections and to manage the Senegalese Republic. This means that we've been preparing for this eventuality for a long time. In 2019, we already had a candidate who was unfairly rejected, even though he had already gone through the sponsorship process. Today, it's a question of updating our program which, in our opinion, is still relevant" says Ngone Diop. 

Various factions of the Senegalese opposition parties have termed the recent move by outgoing President Macky Sall not to vie again as a triumph to the people.

Posted by Africanews on Wednesday, July 5, 2023

But will Macky Sall's withdrawal and Ousmane Sonko's sidelining really benefit Khalifa Sall and Karim Wade? While some believe the cards could be reshuffled, political analyst Bakary Domingo Mane remains skeptical on the matter.

"I wonder if we can talk about reshuffling the cards. I think the president still holds all the cards and he's maneuvering. He's leaving, but he wants to make sure he has his back. And how can he do that? Through elections that the administration itself is going to organize. So, are these going to be transparent elections? Will they be inclusive elections? I can't say, but what is certain is that the President will do everything in his power to ensure that the next President is someone close to him, Mane explained.

Africanews Wahany Sambo reports that for the time being, the presidential camp has yet to nominate its candidate for the 2024 polls nor does the opposition know who its candidates will be on February 25.

View more