Senegalese President slashes his term in office by two years

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sallSenegalese President Macky Sall has reduced his presidential term from seven to five years.

A statement released by the presidency announced that the reduction of the presidential term takes effect immediately.

This ultimately means that there will be no referendum on the issue as had previously been planned to happen in April 2016.

The statement said that the president’s decision was intended to end the confusion among politicians over the holding of the referendum.

President Sall said that the decision was among a 15-point constitutional development ‘action plan’ that he is advocating for.

The opposition have for months been arguing that the referendum would not be held due to cost concerns. At the same time, leaders from the opposition have accused the government of exaggerating the cost of the exercise.

Senegal inherited the seven-year presidential term limit at independence from France in 1960.

The West African country maintained the same up to 2000 when incoming president Abdoulaye Wade promised to reduce the tenure to five years but failed to do so in his 12-year rule that ended in 2012.

With President Sall’s decree that the reduction takes effect at once, it now means the next presidential election will be in 2017.

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