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Senegal constitutional council says election delay unlawful

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Senegal’s Constitutional Council has ruled that parliament’s postponement of the February 25 presidential election to December was not in line with the constitution, council minutes showed yesterday.

Opposition presidential candidates and lawmakers had filed a number of legal challenges to last week’s parliamentary bill, which also extended President Macky Sall’s mandate in what critics said amounted to an “institutional coup.”

“The law … is contrary to the constitution,” the council decided, according to the minutes.

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The council also ruled to cancel a decree announced by Sall ahead of the vote that had set the postponement in motion.

The council is headed by Mr Mamadou Badio Camara as its president, Ms Aminata Ly Ndiaye as vice president, Mr Mouhamadou Diawara, Youssoupha Diaw Mbodj, Ms Awa Dièye and Mr Cheikh Ahmed Tidiane Coulibaly.

Asked by AP news agency in an interview last weekend whether he will accept the ruling of the council were it to rule against his moves, President Sall gave a non-committal answer only saying “he will decide what to do when that time comes”.

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