Congo’s president seeks to alter constitution to allow third term

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The Republic of Congo president Denis Sassou Nguesso on Tuesday announced a referendum on changes to the country’s constitution to allow him run for a third term in office in the presidential elections slated for next year.

Sassou Nguesso, 71, who has been president of Congo for 31 years in two separate spells in office, is banned by the current constitution from seeking another term.

The president however called a national forum in July to discuss reforms including raising the maximum age for presidential candidates and scrapping off the two-term limit, fueling expectations that he would seek another term in next year’s polls.

A commission, onw whose composition is not yet kown, has to propose a new draft constitution before a date is chosen for the referendum.

Sassou Nguesso last month replaced two of his ministers for taking part in an opposition organized meeting that called for resistance against any attempts to revise the constitution