The Algerian Constitutional Council has not yet debated a possible procedure for dismissal of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika for unfit to carry out his office, reported Thursday the Algerian public radio.
This constitutional solution to the protests that has been going on since late February was proposed Tuesday by the army chief of staff and Deputy Defense Minister, General Ahmed Gaïd Salah, who demanded that the president, 82 years and considerably weakened since a stroke in 2013, is declared by the Constitutional Council unfit to exercise power under Article 102 of the Constitution.
This article states that the President may be declared in a “state of impediment” in the event of a serious and lasting illness that makes it impossible for him to perform his duties.
Hundreds of people gathered again Thursday in the center of Algiers to denounce the “system” and demand the departure of the president.
“Thieves, you have destroyed the country!” Chanted the protesters.
“Our fight will continue until we get rid of the system,” said Belaid Hakimi, a 36-year-old architect.
Another bad news for President Bouteflika on Thursday, one of the last remaining allies, the prominent businessman Ali Haddad, presented his resignation letter from the presidency of the influential employers’ organization FCE (Forum of Chiefs business).
Ali Haddad, who had obtained major public works projects from the state and invested in the media, has contributed to the financing of Bouteflika’s election campaigns over the years.
If Abdelaziz Bouteflika is found unfit by the Constitutional Council to perform his duties, which must be ratified by a two-thirds majority in both Houses of Parliament, he will be replaced for a period of at least 45 days by the President of the Council of the nation, the upper house of the Algerian Parliament, Abdelkader Bensalah.