Denis sassou

Congo Brazaville long-time ruler Denis Sassou Nguesso runs for fourth term

Eight canditates are running for the presidential elections in Congo Brazaville and their names have been submitted to the constitutional court for validation ahead of the 21 March election.

President Denis Sassou Nguesso will face seven challengers including the former finance minister, Mathias Dzon, and Guy-Brice Parfait Kolelas, the son of a former prime minister.

The 77-year-old Sassou Nguesso is seeking a fourth term. He has been in power since 1979, except for a five-year period after losing elections in 1992.

Others in the presidential race are Albert Oniangue, a former aide-de-camp of Sassou Nguesso, Joseph Kignoumbi Kia Mbougou, a former MP, Anguios Nganguia Engambe, customs official, MP Michel Mboussi Ngouari and Deve Mafoula, a 38-year-old aspirant.

The largest opposition group, the Pan-African Union for Social Democracy (UPADS), has said it will boycott the polls.

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The constitution was changed in a referendum in 2015 to remove term and age limits.

Mr Sassou Nguesso’s victory in 2016 was marred by violence and claims of fraud.

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