Senegal: The Return of Personalism

Issue Date January 2008
Volume 19
Issue 1
Page Numbers 156-169
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From a democratic perspective, the era of President Wade has been a severe disappointment, dashing hopes that the great turnover of 2000 would pave the way for democratic consolidation. President Wade was reelected to a fresh term on 25 February 2007 but the problems gripping the country have done nothing but intensify since his reelection. The signs of trouble include a twelve-party boycott of the 3 June 2007 elections for the 150-seat National Assembly, the lack of dialogue among contending political factions, and the demand by the leading opposition coalition for a national conference. Despite the promise of democracy in 2000, Senegal today has declined to the point of mere electoral authoritarianism.