Algeria’s 82-year old wheelchair-bound president Abdelaziz Bouteflika caved in to mass demonstrations against ‘his’ reelection bid (MEES, 8 March), announcing on 11 March he would no longer be seeking a fifth term.
Highlighting the huge pressure on the government, Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia resigned on 11 March making way for Interior Minister Noureddine Bedoui who says he will announce a new cabinet early next week consisting of technocrats and representatives of young Algerians. Canceling the 18 April election, Mr Bouteflika set out a transitional period in which a national conference would draft a new constitution by the end of 2019 and be put to a referendum shortly after. But protesters remain unconvinced, demanding Mr Bouteflika step down immediately in their quest for a complete overhaul of the system. (CONTINUED - 124 WORDS)