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Algeria council accepts Bouteflika’s resignation, new leader imminent

Algeria’s Constitutional Council on Wednesday accepted the resignation of president Abdul Aziz Bouteflika, less that 24-hours after he accepted to step down following weeks of protests.

The embattled 82-year-old had accepted to ditch his move to run for a fifth consecutive term. The protests which kept spreading week in and out forced him to commit to stepping down in February.

He had lost the backing of the political establishment after the ruling FLN party withdrew support for him.

Beside the protests, the most sustained opposition came last week when the army chief of staff demanded immediate action to remove him from office. He repeated the call over the weekend and earlier this week.

“There is no more room to waste time,” state news agency APS quoted Lieutenant General Ahmed Gaed Salah as saying.

Bouteflika had sought to fend off the wave of dissent against his two-decade-old rule that began on Feb 22 by reversing his decision to seek a fifth term. But he did not say when he would go, further angering protesters.

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