CrisisWatch Chad

Unchanged Situation

President Déby secured election win amid reports of voting irregularities and repression of opposition, tightening grip on power.

Déby clinched victory, cemented his control despite opposition challenges. Following 5-6 May presidential polls, electoral authority 9 May declared Déby winner with 61% of vote, marking end of transition period; rivals including former PM Padacké and incumbent PM Masra initially contested results, filing unsuccessful appeals with Constitutional Court which 16 May certified results. Déby 17 May rejected calls for national unity govt, further isolating opposition, as Masra same day acknowledged defeat and 22 May resigned as PM; Déby inaugurated next day and appointed Allamaye Halina as PM; Halina 27 May announced new govt formed of pro-Déby ministers and no opposition members. 

International actors welcomed vote amid reports of irregularities and repression. As military deployed significant presence around polling stations and in major cities, security forces 6 May detained 79 Masra supporters over alleged fraud. Reports of electoral irregularities emerged with some polling stations inadequately equipped or opening late while opposition observers reported under-age voting and regime supporters confiscating ballot boxes. Meanwhile, independent election observers faced restrictions, with civil society 5 May and EU 7 May condemning denial of access for 2,900 trained observers. Following vote, canton chief and aide 10 May assaulted opposition activist in Koumra town, while opposition journalist same day reported intimidation from armed men in capital N’Djamena and later went into hiding. NGO Human Rights Watch 13 May expressed concerns over political repression and govt’s consolidation of power. International actors largely welcomed Déby’s election, however. Regional body Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) 12 May congratulated Déby, as did French President Emmanuel Macron 17 May. U.S. 16 May acknowledged transition milestone but highlighted “troubling shortcomings”. Amid growing ties with Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin 14 May sent congratulatory message.

Banditry and herder-farmer-related insecurity persisted. Farmer and herder groups 9 May clashed in Lac-Iro area of Moyen-Chari region, killing at least five civilians and injuring others, after alleged cattle raid by herders. Governor of Ennedi-East region 17 May announced arrest of eight bandits on murder charges in Amdjarass city on Libyan border.

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