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President Wade looks to second term in office, and more Asian aid

[Senegal] President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal. [Date picture taken: 07/27/2006] IRIN
President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal, peacemaker
President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal has publicly confirmed for the first time that he will run for a new term in next year’s presidential elections. “It is obvious - and I won’t hesitate - that the Senegalese people want me to stand, my party wants me to stand, so I will stand,” Wade, who is almost 80 years of age, said late Thursday. Wade, who is founder and leader of the Senegal Democratic Party, swept to power in 2000 as head of a coalition that broke the chain of domination since independence in 1960 by Senegal’s Socialist Party. “I have the force to stand and continue my work as the President of Senegal… but the decision rests with the Senegalese people,” said Wade, referring to elections set for next February. Wade is nearing the end of his first seven-year term as head of state, but a constitutional amendment passed since he took office will limit any future term to five years. Senegal’s democratic track record has won wide support from Western donors and development partners, but Wade said that aid from Asian donors is faster and has less conditions attached. “With Asian countries, it’s fast and it’s direct,” said Wade. Wade, who visited China recently, broke ties with Taiwan last year and has since garnered substantial economic and development support from Beijing. Wade, who was speaking at a meeting with the foreign press in the Senegalese capital Dakar, said aid from the US, much of Europe and international institutions such as the World Bank, was often held up by lengthy and complicated bureaucracy. The one European exception, he said, was Spain. ss/ccr

This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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