The Supreme Court of Comoros has granted approval for President Azali Assoumani to seek a fourth term in the upcoming January 14 elections. Assoumani, who clinched his third victory in 2019, will be competing against nine other candidates, including a former interior minister and Salim Issa, the flagbearer for Juwa, the party associated with imprisoned former President Ahmed Abdallah Sambi.
However, the electoral landscape is fraught with controversy as opposition groups threaten a potential boycott, citing concerns over the transparency of the electoral process. They are demanding specific conditions, such as the release of political prisoners, as prerequisites for their participation.
This archipelago nation, nestled in the Indian Ocean and home to a modest population of approximately 800,000, has weathered a tumultuous history marred by more than 20 coups or attempted coups since gaining independence from France in the 1970s. Assoumani, a former army officer, originally ascended to power through a coup in 1999.