Senegal’s Sall will ride out gas scandal furore

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Subject

Senegalese gas scandal.

Significance

A high-profile scandal implicating President Macky Sall's brother Aliou continues to prompt controversy. A BBC documentary aired last month alleging an improper relationship between controversial Romanian-Australian businessman Frank Timis and Aliou surrounding offshore natural gas field licences.

Impacts

  • The scandal may dent Senegal’s democratic credentials but is unlikely to dampen overall interest in the burgeoning oil and gas sector.
  • Concerns will mount that Sall is gradually instituting a form of ‘civil authoritarianism’, with a growing clampdown on dissent.
  • The youthful Ousmane Sonko, who placed third in the February elections, could use the scandal to bolster his anti-corruption credentials.
  • Fears may grow that Sall could ultimately pursue a third-term bid, using a new 2016 constitution as his validation.
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