Niger ‘s President Mahamadou Issoufou was sworn in for another five-year term in office on Saturday after a controversial election boycotted by the opposition. Issoufou took the oath of office in Niamey in front of a crowd that included a number of African leaders from Ivorycoast, Chad, Senegal and other representatives from over 53 nations as well as United States of America.
Niger’s opposition leader and candidate Hama Amadou was put in prison from November last year 2015 until March 2016 because of the alleged involvement in a baby-trafficking, a charge of which he has dismissed as politically motivated. however, he was taken to Paris in France for medical treatment before the vote.
He promised Niger would remain involved in the fight against Islamist militants who have spread chaos and death across northern Africa.
“Terrorism is an absolute evil,” Issoufou said in his inaugural speech. “As long as terrorism is not eradicated in northern Mali and as along as Libya is not stabilized, we will not be able to sleep in peace.”
Issoufou was re-elected in a runoff with about 92 percent of the vote. The opposition boycotted the election when its candidate, Hama Amadou, was jailed on what it said were phony baby-trafficking charges.
Hama Amadou was freed on bail late last month in march after falling ill in prison four days before the runoff election and was flown to Paris in France for medical treatment.
Despite its mineral wealth, Niger is one of Africa’s most impoverished countries. The president has promised his new government will be one that unifies the nation and pursue economic and social development.
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