Chadian Government And Opposition Accuse Each Other Over Killings

More than 50 people were killed and over 300 wounded in a day of violent protests, sparked by the announcement of a delay to the return of democratic elections after a year of military rule.

Four days after violent anti-government protests in Chad left more than fifty people dead and over 300 wounded, the government and the opposition have traded accusations over responsibility for the casualties.

The demonstrations against the delay of elections have been described as “unprecedented” in the history of the country by observers. 

There were violent demonstrations in several towns of the country, and were particularly violent in the capital N’Djamena and Moundou, the country’s second largest town, situated to the south of Chad.

Prime Minister Saleh Kebzabo decreed a dusk to dawn curfew in N’Djamena, Moundou and two other towns “until total order is re-established”. He said the violence left “at least fifty people dead and over three hundred wounded”.

The opposition puts the death toll at over one hundred, with more than five hundred people wounded.

The Prime Minister has also announced the suspension of “all public activities by political parties and civil society organisations” for three months.

At the beginning of October it was announced that the mandate of the Transitional Military Council (TMC) of strongman General Mahamat Idriss Deby Itno, was being extended for two years.

The authorities point an accusing finger at one leader of the opposition, Succes Masra, whom they describe as the “Black Sheep” of the opposition. 

The leader of the “Les Transformateurs” party did not himself take part in the recent “national dialogue” which agreed to the extension of military rule by two years. 

Masra said the decision “lacked transparency”.

On Saturday October 22, 2022, the members of the Chadian diaspora in Paris, France, paid special homage to victims of the October 20, 2022 brutality by the security forces.

“Les Transformateurs” party which took part in the Paris meeting, accused the N’Djamena authorities of being responsible for the violence.

Uneasy calm has since returned to the country but security presence in the streets remains high.

The Transitional Military Council has been in power in Chad since the killing of Idriss Deby, father of General Mahamat Deby, in April last year.

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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