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Mali: ex-PM Cisse poised to run for presidency

Former Malian Prime Minister, Boubou Cisse is no longer making a secret of his candidacy for the Malian presidential election.Mali…

Former Malian Prime Minister, Boubou Cisse is no longer making a secret of his candidacy for the Malian presidential election.Mali is heading in seven months, towards a very open presidential election. And in this perspective, Boubou Cisse is announced among the potential candidates.

The last PM of the government of Ibrahima Boubacar Keita overthrown on 18 August 2020 by the army was accused of plotting to destabilize the transition in this key country at war with jihadists.

His subsequent arrest has apparently something to do with his ambitions for the next presidential election that the junta must organize according to the recommendations of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in February 2022. “It is a possibility that I have not yet thought about. But whether it is as a candidate or not, the main thing is to ensure that we can talk to each other and find solutions together,” he had said after his dismissal by the mutineers.

Proven innocent of these accusations by the courts, the 47-year-old politician is now refining his strategy by focusing on the ‘Union pour la Republique et la Democracy’ (URD) of the late Soumaila Cisse, which he joined last June. But within this political party, the candidacy of the secretary in charge of economic and financial affairs of the party is still not unanimous.

URD candidate?

The road to the Palace of Koulouba will involve some compromises for Boubou Cisse who needs the URD’s electoral apparatus to win the election. The young politician will have to face the experience of three former Prime Ministers: Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga, Moussa Mara and Modibo Sidibe, whose candidacies are also agitated as well as that of the businessman Aliou Boubacar Diallo, who came third in the 2018 presidential election.

If he win the support of some URD party bosses, such as Gouagnon Coulibaly of Kati, the powerful former minister Amadou Cisse of the Teninkou section and favorable prejudices within the family of Soumaila Cisse, he will have to rally to his cause, two potential candidates from within the party: Demba Traore and Amadou Diallo, respectively Spokesman and former President of the National Youth Movement.

Mr. Cisse, an economist by profession, who abandoned a career at the World Bank to return to Mali in 2013, will have to convince Malians and also the military of his ability to lead the country. So far, Assimi Goita, who became the odd-job man of this transition after the dismissal of the transitional president Bah Ndaw, is trying to find his bearings in the management of the country.

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