Chad’s military council appoints new government

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YAOUNDE, Cameroon

Chad’s Transitional Military Council (CMT) which took control of the country after the surprise death of President Idriss Deby Itno last month has named a 40-person transitional government.

The new government came after consultations with the transitional prime minister, Albert Pahimi Padacke who was tasked to propose a list of cabinet members to the CMT.

A Ministry of National Reconciliation and Dialogue has been created and entrusted to Acheikh Ibn Oumar, a former rebel leader who became a diplomatic adviser to the presidency in 2019.

Opposition figure Mahamat Ahmat Alhabo of the Party for Freedoms and Development was named the justice minister.

Cherif Mahamat Zene was appointed the foreign minister, a post he held from 2018 to 2020. He had also served as the permanent representative of Chad to the UN.

In a tweet on Monday, he thanked the CMT and the prime minister for his appointment.

“I’m aware of the weight of responsibility in this particularly difficult period for our country. May Allah the Almighty guide our steps and make it easier,” Zene said.

Lydie Beassemda, the first woman candidate for a presidential election in the April 11 poll and former minister under late President Idriss Deby Itno, was named the higher education and research minister. Beassemda is one of the nine women of the new government.

The military council is in charge of the 18-month transitional government, after which it will hold democratic elections.

It is chaired by Gen. Mahamat Idriss Deby, the son of the late president who died from wounds sustained in fighting with rebel forces, a day after he was proclaimed the winner of a presidential election, handing him a sixth term in office.

On Sunday, the military council lifted a curfew imposed on April 20 following the death of President Deby.

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