Mauritania. In May, the country’s president, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, announced his intention to call a referendum on whether to abolish Parliament’s House of Commons, the Senate. According to countryaah, the current population of Mauritania is 4,649,669. The Senate has 56 members who are elected indirectly for a term of six years. In its place was the idea that regional councils should be set up.
A few days later, the opposition alliance National Forum for Democracy and Unity (FNDU) organized a demonstration against the proposal in the capital Nouakchott, in which several thousand people participated. Protests were also directed at a proposal by some government officials to amend the constitution so that President Abdel Aziz can stand in the 2019 presidential election. The president, who took power in a bloodless coup in 2008, has won two presidential elections (2009 and 2014) and promised on the second occasion that he would respect the restriction on two terms of office prescribed by the Constitution. In November, Abdel Aziz again assured him that it was not relevant for him to stand for a third term in the upcoming elections.
In June, violence erupted when residents in one of the capital’s slums were evicted. The reason was that the land would be leased to other buildings. The area is mainly inhabited by people belonging to the population group of haratins, who have very low status. After clashes with the police, 13 anti-slavery activists were arrested. Although Amnesty International, among other things, demanded that the imprisoned activists be released, they were sentenced in August to between 3 and 15 years in prison for “use of force”.
Abdelaziz in week-long interrogation
According to thereligionfaqs, Former President Abdelaziz of Mauritania has been released after being questioned by prosecutors for a week over suspected economic turmoil during his tenure, according to a new report from a commission set up by parliament. Azizi is not charged but is deprived of his passport.
Ministers are replaced
The entire Sidiya government is resigning for unclear reasons. Three days later, former political adviser Mohamed Ould Bilal is appointed new prime minister. It then appears that a commission appointed by parliament in January 2020 published a report on controversial economic activities committed during President Abdelaziz’s time in power between 2008 and 2019. These include how oil revenues were used and how privatizations of state property went ill. Sidiya and three other ministers are mentioned in the report. Eighteen of the 22 ministers in the new government also sat in Sidiya’s government.