Senegal’s Upcoming Elections

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It’s been known for a while that January and February might get kind of hairy in Senegal, with upcoming decisions regarding the president’s ability to run for office again and the actual elections.

A small taste of what’s to come.

That’s the front page of Seneweb, a popular Senegalese news site, right now. Today, one of the leaders of an opposition party, Barthelemy Dias, was attacked in the Mermoz area, and he retaliated by shooting and killing one person and wounding a few others. Dias says the men who attacked him were “goons” sent by the president.

Both pro- and anti-president demonstrations are planned near downtown for tomorrow afternoon. Things could get pretty interesting. I’m not worried about our personal safety at all, but I would hate to see Senegal suffer the consequences of a big political throwdown. Senegalese people are typically peaceful and calm – but in my opinion, they’ve been pushed to the brink in various ways by their government.

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