Should the city of Dakar be suppressed – administratively – as a society? The Minister of Territorial Collectives threw a stone at the dam. According to Oumar Guèye, Dakar, like four other cities in the country – Pikine, Guédiawaye, Rufisque and Thiès “has no reason to exist”. In the perspective of the next local elections, an important step before the 2024 presidential election, the issue raises, very politically, a lively debate.
as reported from Dakar, Charlotte idrac
If Dakar was no longer a city, there would be 19 separate municipalities. If Dakar was no longer a city, there would no longer be a mayor but a president of the branch council. This is the option defended by Minister Oumar Guèye, who refers to the Code of Local Authorities. But for the decentralization expert, Amadou Sène Niang, the Senegalese state continues to “nibble” on the capital’s powers:
“All initiatives from the cities in the hands of the opposition are blocked administratively or politically. The city of Dakar had initiated a bond loan that was denied by the state at the last minute. If they are determined to destroy that city, it’s because there are other targets. ”
► To read also: Senegal: what will Dakar look like in 2035?
“Battle of Dakar”
Dakar has lost a majority since the president came to power Macky Sall 2012, with the ousted former mayor, Khalifa Sall (from 2009 to 2018), when one of his faithful, Soham El Wardini (since 2018). A redistribution of the electoral system could make it possible to further weaken the opposition. For the political scientist Papa Fara Diallo, the power seeks at all costs to take control of the capital:
“The battle for Dakar will take place. (…) President Macky Sall, in collaboration with some opposition leaders, is building a large coalition to conquer as many local authorities as possible in order to calmly prepare for the 2024 election. “
No official date has yet been set for the local elections planned, in principle before March 2021.