Ismail Omar Guelleh to be elected President again
Djibouti is holding a presidential election today and there seems little doubt that the man who has held the country in his grip since 1999, President Ismail Omar Guelleh of the People’s Rally for Progress (RPP) will win.
Few people will consider the election to have been free and fair as the authorities have stamped down on just about anyone who opposes the president; even a BBC reporting team were thrown out of the country this week ostensibly for talking to an opposition candidate.
There are six candidates altogether. They are:
Djama Djama Abdourhaman; an Independent
Hassan Idriss Ahmed; of the Republican Alliance for Democracy (ARD)
Mohamed Daoud Chehem; of the Djibouti Party for Development (PDD), a part of the USN
Mohamed Moussa Ali said Tourtour; an Independent
Omar Elmi Khaireh; of the United Democratic Centre (CDU), a part of the USN
Ismail Omar Guelleh; Incumbent President and of the People’s Rally for Progress (RPP)
There are seven opposition parties boycotting the election. They include five parties of the opposition alliance known as the National Salvation Union (USN), but two of their group are contesting.
In theory the presidential election allows for two voting rounds with the second slated for 22nd April, but no-one expects that it will be necessary.