President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Algeria’s frail 81-year-old president who has been in power since 1999, will stand for a fifth consecutive term, the state news agency APS reported him to have said on Sunday.
The 81-year-old president, who has been in power since 1999, suffered a stroke in 2013. He is rarely seen in public.
The news puts an end to uncertainty surrounding his state of health and whether he will seek re-election in the April 18 presidential election. Observers believe Bouteflika will win again despite rarely seen in public since suffering a stroke that confined him to a wheelchair in 2013, as the Algerian opposition remains weak and fragmented.
APS said Bouteflika plans to amend the constitution if re-elected. The news agency, however, did not say which specific amendments he would seek.
Bouteflika is the third oldest African Presidents in Africa, he is also the second oldest president in North Africa.
Reuters, citing a source familiar with the matter, reports that if Bouteflika wins, he would likely propose the creation of the post of vice-president to help him govern the country. Names cited by Algerian media as a possible future vice-president include former U.N. diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi and Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia, who was touted, in some quarters, to become the next president if Bouteflika decides not to run.
Bouteflika is very popular with many Algerians, who credit him with putting an end to a longstanding war in the energy-rich North African country by offering amnesty to former Islamist fighters. His ruling FLN party has announced him as its official presidential candidate and several political parties, trade unions and business organisations have promised to back his re-election bid.
Top Five Oldest Presidents In Africa, 2019
1. Mohamed Beji Caid Essebsi, Tunisia – Age: 92
Muhammad beji born 29 November 1926 is a Tunisian politician who has been President of Tunisia since December 2014. Previously he served as Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1981 to 1986 and as Prime Minister from February 2011 to December 2011. He is now the oldest president in Africa and the second oldest president in the world, he is also the oldest president in Northern Africa.
2. Paul Biya – Cameroon, Age: 86 Years
Paul hails from Cameroon and was born on February 13, 1933. Politics was always in Biya’s blood, and he has managed to be president for several terms, he has been the President of Cameroon since 6 November 1982. At the age of 85 and still in power, Paul Biya is the second oldest president in Africa and the oldest president in central Africa.
3. Abdelaziz Bouteflika – Algeria, Age: 81 years
Abdelaziz Bouteflika is an Algerian politician who has been the fifth President of Algeria since 1999. He was Minister of Foreign Affairs from 1963 to 1979. As President, he presided over the end of the bloody Algerian Civil War in 2002, and he ended emergency rule in February 2011 amidst regional unrest. He has also served as president of the United Nations General Assembly.
Currently not only is he the third oldest African Presidents in Africa, he is also the second oldest president in North Africa.
4. Manuel Pinto da Costa – São Tomé and Príncipe, Age: 81 years
Manuel Pinto da Costa is a politician who served as the first President of São Tomé and Príncipe from 1975 to 1991. He was again elected as President in August 2011 and took office on 3 September 2011.
He is the 4th oldest African presidents.
5. Alpha Condé – Guinea, Age: 80 years
Alpha Condé born on 4th march 1938 is a Guinean politician who was elected as President of Guinea in 2010. This was after two unsuccessful attempts to outrun President Lansana Conté in the 1993 and 1998 presidential elections. When he took office that December, he became the first freely elected president in the country’s history and now one of the oldest African presidents.