Five months after taking power, Mahamat Idriss Deby, the head of Chad’s military government, appointed ninety-three members of the country’s interim parliament, known as the National Transitional Council (CNT).
According to a statement released by Deby’s office, the CNT “will act as a transitional national assembly” until the next elections are held in the country.
After the death in combat of his father, Idriss Deby, the young Déby took control of N’djamena, the country’s capital, and ousted the Chadian parliament, promising “free and transparent elections” within eighteen months. . The measures were a blatant violation of the country’s constitution, which decrees that the head of the country’s parliament should become interim president until the elections are held, which has led to accusations that Deby took power during the election. ‘a coup. However, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian defended Deby’s actions, arguing that the “exceptional circumstances” of the security situation in Chad justified the waiver of the constitution.
The decree appointed some members of the Chadian political opposition to the National Transitional Council, but clearly excluded Wakit Tamma, a major opposition movement, as well as civil society organizations that opposed Deby’s takeover.
In the months following Deby’s takeover, he consolidated his power across the country. On May 11, its Transitional Military Council appointed Albert Pahimi Padacke, a nominal opposition figure, as interim prime minister. Padacke had previously served as Prime Minister from 2016 to 2018, during the reign of the elder Deby.
On April 11, Padacke, a member of the opposition party of the National Rally of Chadian Democrats, lost the Chadian presidential election to Déby, obtaining ten percent of the vote against Deby’s seventy-nine percent, giving the incumbent president a sixth term.
However, less than two weeks later, on April 20, the elder Deby was killed while leading troops in combat against the Chadian rebel group FACT. After continuing his father’s offensive, Mahamat Deby claimed victory over FACT in May, although minor skirmishes continued in the far north of the country.
The two Debys have ruled Chad since 1990, when Deby’s Patriotic Salvation Movement (MPS) invaded Chad from Sudan and defeated outgoing leader Hissène Habré. The MPS remains Chad’s largest political party and held 110 of the country’s 188 seats in the country’s parliament before its dissolution.
Habré, who was later found guilty of war crimes by a 2016 international tribunal in Senegal, died of COVID-19 on August 24.
Trevor Filseth is a current affairs and foreign affairs writer for the National interest.