Ivorian President Should Seek New Term, Party Official Says

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara should seek a third term in October elections following the death of his party’s candidate, the spokesman of the ruling coalition said.

“His mission isn’t completed yet,” Kobenan Kouassi Adjoumani, spokesman for the Rally of the Houphouetists for Democracy and Peace, said Wednesday. Kouassi spoke at a ceremony to commemorate Prime Minister Amadou Gon Coulibaly, who died last week after spending weeks in France to seek medical treatment for heart problems.

The nomination of Gon Coulibaly as the RHDP’s candidate earlier this year ended more than a year of uncertainty over the intentions of Ouattara, who hinted in 2018 that he considered seeking a third term to sustain economic growth in the world’s biggest cocoa producer. Ouattara spoke briefly at the ceremony without addressing the issue.

Even though Ivory Coast limits presidential mandates to two consecutive five-year terms, the ruling alliance has argued that a 2016 constitutional change wipes the slate clean and allows the 78-year-old leader to run again.

Gon Coulibaly will be buried Friday.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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