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Ivorian voters back liberals' constitutional change
Tuesday 8 November 2016 15:11

Democratic reforms championed by Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara and leader of LI full-member RDR, achieved a major feat this week when voters approved the proposed constitutional changes by an overwhelming majority. Turn-out was slightly lower than the last presidential election at just over 42%, but the changes were approved almost unanimously at 93%. The reforms had been cleared to head to a referendum, having won the backing of the Ivorian Parliament in October.  

Since elected, President Ouattara has placed strengthening democracy at the heart of his agenda. The draft presented by the Ivorian President sought to soften a clause of the constitution that required presidential candidates to have natural born Ivorian parents. The clause became the centre of controversy and heart of the civil war in 2010.

The approved changes will create a more robust democratic system with the creation of the position of Vice President of the Republic and a Senate chamber to supplement the legislature and provide an avenue for increased government scrutiny.

President Ouattara’s contributions to democracy and stability have not gone unnoticed by the Liberal Community. LI President Juli Minoves invested President Ouattara with the Liberal International Medal of Freedom for his contributions to the country, after a civil war ensnared when then-President Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down. 

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