Safety autos and barricades surrounded the house of a Senegalese opposition chief Wednesday as authorities banned rallies on the eve of a trial that might decide his eligibility to contest subsequent 12 months’s presidential election.
A cordon of police in riot gear barred the best way to Ousmane Sonko’s car on the finish of his avenue exterior his house within the capital Dakar, footage broadcast stay on social networks confirmed.
Safety forces fired tear fuel at reporters interviewing a member of parliament who had come to assist Sonko, an AFP journalist noticed.
Sonko’s confinement comes amid rising tensions a 12 months forward of the presidential election, elevating fears of violence in a state reputed for stability.
Sonko, a firebrand politician who got here third within the final presidential election, is anticipated in court docket Thursday after being sued by Tourism Minister Mame Mbaye Niang for “defamation, insult and forgery.”
“He has not been in a position to go away his house since final night time… We do not know why, there is no court docket resolution inserting him below home arrest,” Ousseynou Ly, spokesman for Sonko’s political social gathering, Pastef, informed AFP.
The police arrange roadblocks within the streets surrounding his house, an AFP reporter noticed.
The prefect of Dakar, Mor Talla Tine, additionally banned a pro-Sonko demonstration deliberate for Wednesday afternoon.He cited “actual threats to public order” and a building web site on the chosen route.
The opposition has known as for nationwide demonstrations to sentence what it calls manipulation of the justice system and arbitrary arrests.
Rallies have been authorised exterior Dakar. On Tuesday, Sonko held an authorised gathering the place he informed hundreds of supporters that he was “able to struggle.”
Along with the defamation lawsuit, Sonko is going through separate expenses of rape and making demise threats, primarily based on a criticism by an worker at a magnificence salon the place he was getting a therapeutic massage.
On January 18, he was referred to a legal court docket on these expenses. That case has been a supply of pressure in Senegal for 2 years.
The 2 authorized affairs might decide whether or not Sonko might be allowed to run within the presidential elections set for February 2024.
Sonko claims the fees are a part of a plot to torpedo his possibilities.
He has additionally claimed President Macky Sall intends to override the structure and run for a 3rd time period.
Sall, who was elected in 2012 and once more in 2019, has not confirmed or denied whether or not he seeks a 3rd spell in workplace.