Senegal's President Macky Sall dissolved his government a few months before elections in the West African country. Only Prime Minister Amadou Ba remains in office for the time being, who is also Sall's designated successor as the governing coalition's presidential candidate, according to a statement from the presidential office late on Friday evening.
The head of state thanked all ministers for their work and had decided to appoint a new government under Ba, it said. Their cast will be announced soon. No reasons were given.
Elections in February
Senegal has not experienced war or violent upheaval since its independence in 1960 and is considered one of the most stable multi-party democracies in the region. The approximately 17 million inhabitants will elect a new head of state on February 25th.
After violent protests, the centrist politician Sall, who has been in office since 2012, declared that he would not run for a controversial third term in office. Dozens of potential candidates are currently recruiting the necessary number of supporters to be approved by the electoral authorities.
Leading opposition politician Ousmane Sonko was removed from the electoral rolls and barred from voting or standing for election after serving a prison sentence in an abuse case in the summer. He has been in custody on other charges since the end of July, during which he was hospitalized due to a hunger strike. His Pastef party was dissolved by the government because it was said to have repeatedly called for violent protests.
At least 18 people were killed this year in massive unrest during the Sonko trials, several from gunshots of unknown origin. The government temporarily blocked mobile internet and deployed the army to calm the situation.