Mali’s Prime Minister has taken to the General Assembly to call on the international community to support a constitutional referendum and national elections scheduled for next year, saying they will cement nearly two decades of democratic behaviour in the West African country.
Cissé Mariam Kaïdama Sidibé told the Assembly’s annual general debate last night that next year’s referendum and elections were the culmination of a lengthy consultative process launched by the country’s President Amadou Toumani Touré – who she said is not running for re-election – to “consolidate democracy, good governance and the rule of law.”
As part of that process, Ms. Sidibé said the laws governing Mali’s electoral processes, Constitutional Court, Supreme Court, media and political parties would be revised and updated.
She added that an inclusive political process was already under way with political parties and civil society to “guarantee the transparency and credibility of the referendum and election operations.”
Ms. Sidibé said Malian democracy had matured substantially over the past 20 years since a military regime was overthrown in 1991, but the support of the international community would help ensure the elections and referendum are free, transparent and democratic. The country’s current constitution dates back to 1992.