Politics & Economics

Who Are The Main Candidates In The Algerian Elections?

North Africa

Five candidates have been approved to participate in the Algerian elections that are scheduled to take place on 12 December.

The Independent National Elections Body in Algeria confirmed the five candidates on 2 November that will be participating in the first presidential elections to take place in Algeria since the resignation of former President Abduleziz Bouteflika. The five candiadates that will be competing on 12 December to become President include: Abdelmadjid Tebboune and Ali Benflis, Azzedine Mihoubi , Abdelkader Bengrine and Abdelaziz Belaid.

Starting with Abdelmadjid Tebboune, he is a former Prime Minister, who only held the position for three months between May – August 2017 during the Presidency of Bouteflika. He is said to be the candidate who has received the greatest number of sponsors for his presidential campaign, amassing a total of 124,000, of which 104,000 have been approved.

Ali Benflis is also a former Prime Minister, who served in the position between 2000 and 2003. He became the General Secretary of the National Liberation Front Party (FLN) in 2003, the ruling party in Algeria since the War of Independence. He was previously been a candidate for the position of President on two occasions, losing out to Bouteflika both times.

Azzerdine Mihoubi has previously been Minister of Culture in Algeria. He is the current interim Secretary General of the Democratic National Rally, a party known to traditionally have ties with the National Liberation Front.

Abdelkader Bengrina used to be the Minister of Tourism in 1997 and is currently the leader of the National Construction Party.

Finally, Abdelaziz Belaïd was formerly a member of the FLN, but formed his own party called the El Moustakbel Front in 2012. He has previously supported Benflis in his presidential campaign against Bouteflika.

As has been feared by the protesters in Algeria for some time, all the candidates, in one way or another, have links with the ancien régime, having occupied positions under the presidency of Bouteflika and/or have been members of the FLN. Most recently, lawyers and university students have been taking to the streets of Algiers to protests the presidential elections.

Image: Middle East Eye