The election began in the context of public dissatisfaction and criticism of the opposition against the incumbent Deby.
Polling stations opened in Chad for a presidential election in which incumbent Idriss Deby is expected to extend his tenure to 30 years despite growing signs of dissatisfaction and criticism of many people over his disposal of his oil assets.
A key ally in the Western campaign against armed groups in the Sahel region, Deby, 68, took the lead in a revolt that ousted longtime military rulers Hissene Habre in 1990.
He won the elections in 1996 and again in 2001 before pushing for a constitutional change in 2018 that could allow him to stay in power until 2033.
He relied on a firm grasp of state institutions and one of the most capable militaries in the region to remain in power. He said he recently foresaw that he would win again “like I have done for the past 30 years”.
Other candidates in Sunday’s election include former Prime Minister Albert Pahimi Padacke, 55, and Felix Nialbe Romadoumngar, 64, who officially is the “leader of the opposition” because of his URD party. eight seats in Congress.
Lydie Beassemda, 54, a former minister of agricultural production, was the first woman to run for president in Chad’s history.
Seven other candidates were rejected by the Supreme Court and three withdrew, including longtime opposition politician Saleh Kebzabo, who give up to protest before the violence of the security forces.
Kebzabo and opposition leader Ngarlejy Yorongar withdrew from the race following an attempt to violently arrest another candidate, Yaya Dillo, in late February.
Deby’s anti-government protests have erupted since February with a coalition of non-governmental organizations, labor unions and opposition political parties calling for a change in political leadership and an end to unjust social and economic.
The authorities have “cruelHuman Rights Watch said in a report this week it responded with persecution of protesters.
On Thursday, the United States called on Chad’s electoral oversight and courts to “ensure these elections are conducted freely, fairly and transparently.”
The United Nations has called for an investigation after security forces arrived to arrest Dillo, a former minister in Deby’s government.
Dillo and other witnesses said security forces were killed the politician mother and daughter were injured. The government said Dillo’s son was not killed in the raid.
At the end of Thursday, the government said it had arrested several opposition politicians accused of planning a “terrorist attack” against the electoral commission headquarters and ransacked the polling stations.