Ivory Coast

Rally of the Republicans

Published 5th December, 2011

The Rally of the Republicans or RDR was founded in June 1994 by former Prime Minister Alassane Ouattara and other dissidents from the Democratic Party of Côte d’Ivoire — African Democratic Rally or PDCI. The party describes itself as centrist and believes in democratic liberalism.

Ouattara had been expected to stand as the RDR presidential candidate in 1995 but he was barred from doing so by a newly enacted electoral code. The party did run in the general election of the same year and won 14 of the 175 seats in the National Assembly.

Ouattara faced a similar problem in 2000 and the RDR boycotted the election. In the 2000/2001 election they did contest and won five seats, a drop of nine seats in a newly enlarged 225 seat National Assembly (they were formally boycotting the election).

In 2005 despite their hostility towards each other, the RDR formed a coalition with the PDCI which was called the Rally of Houphouëtists. They would have fought the elections of that year together but no such elections took place and the next election was held in 2010. In this presidential election Konan Bédié of the PDCI-RDA and Alassane Ouattara of the RDR agreed to allow each to stand and whoever won the most votes would be supported by the other in a second round. Bédié came third in the first round and Ouattara went on to win the election, although under disputed circumstances.

The Rally of the Republicans is a member of Liberal International and the Africa Liberal Network.

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