Chad votes on constitutional term limits for president

[JURIST] Voters in Chad went to the polls Monday to decide whether the current limitation of two terms on the country's president should be removed from Chad's constitution [text in French]. The referendum is being held in response to a bill passed by the Chad Parliament that will remove all term limits from the constitution if approval is obtained from a national referendum. The push for the removal of term limits came from current Chadian President Idriss Deby [Wikipedia profile], who has already served two terms and is currently barred from running for re-election in 2006. Opposition parties in Chad [government website in French] have called on citizens to boycott the referendum and ensure that Chad doesn't become a monarchy, with Deby at its head. Voters have alleged military pressure to vote for the removal of term limits, and the nation's election commission has estimated the eligible voter count at greater than the country's over-18 population, leading to calls of fraud on the part of the government. Due to voting among the country's large nomadic population, results in the poll aren't expected until the end of June. Voice of America has more.

 

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