(MENAFN) Senegal's opposition party, led by the incarcerated opposition leader Ousmane Sonko, announced on Sunday that it would sponsor a different candidate for the upcoming presidential election in February. This decision comes in the wake of the Supreme Court of Senegal effectively blocking Ousmane Sonko's bid for the presidency, with election authorities refusing to provide him with the necessary sponsorship papers required by early December.
The party, known as Pastef and led by Sonko, revealed on its YouTube channel that it would now be endorsing its No. 2 politician, Bassirou Diomaye Faye, for the presidential race. The announcement emphasized that while Faye is the sponsored candidate, it does not imply any abandonment of Ousmane Sonko's candidacy. The party's communique released on Sunday clarified that Sonko's candidacy remains in place, stating that sponsoring Faye is part of their strategy to counter the government's alleged attempts to undermine their movement.
The statement from Pastef highlighted their confidence in Ousmane Sonko's unwavering commitment to the cause, expressing that he will continue to fight without compromise. By sponsoring Bassirou Diomaye Faye, the party aims to thwart what they describe as the regime's strategy and introduce an alternative candidate into the electoral race.
Bassirou Diomaye Faye, a tax and property inspector, serves as the Secretary General of the opposition party. He has faced legal challenges in the past, with his arrest in April on charges of spreading false news, insulting a magistrate, and defaming a constituted body through comments made on social media. Similar to Sonko, Faye is currently confronting a series of additional criminal charges that the party perceives as politically motivated, including allegations of incitement to insurrection, undermining state security, and plotting against the authority of the state, among others.
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