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FILE PHOTO: Chadian interim President Mahamat Idriss Deby speaks during the launch of his presidential campaign ahead of the May elections in N'Djamena, Chad April 14, 2024.

REUTERS/Israel Matene/File Photo

Chadians are voting, but don’t expect change

Chad is the first of the coup-ridden Sahel states to move toward democracy. Well, inch toward democracy.

The current frontrunner is Gen. Mahamat Déby, who has been ruling in an interim capacity since his father, former President Idriss Déby, died while fighting rebels in 2021. The elder Déby led a coup in Chad in 1990 and ruled for three decades. His death opened the possibility of a new era in Chadian politics, with the younger Déby promising to hold elections – in which he wouldn’t run – within 18 months.

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