ABDOULAYE WADE (born 29 May 1926 ) is a Senegalese politician who
was President of
Senegal from 2000 to 2012. He is also the
Secretary-General of the
Senegalese Democratic Party (PDS) and has led
the party since it was founded in 1974. A long-time opposition
leader, he ran for President four times, beginning in 1978, before he
was elected in 2000. He won re-election in 2007 with a majority in
the first round, but in 2012 he was defeated in a controversial bid
for a third term.
* 1 Early life
* 2 Political career
* 2.1 2000 election and first term
* 2.2 2007 election and second term
* 2.3 2012 election for third term
* 3 Praise
* 4 Criticism
* 5 Personal life
* 6 Honours
* 6.1 Foreign honours
* 7 References
Wade was born in
Kébémer , Senegal; officially, he was born in
1926, although some claim he was born several years earlier, and the
record-keeping of the time is not considered particularly reliable.
He studied and taught law at the lycée Condorcet in France. He holds
two doctorates in law and economics. He was also dean of the law and
economics faculty at the
University of Dakar in Senegal.
At a summit of the
Organization of African Unity
Organization of African Unity in
1974, Wade told President
Léopold Sédar Senghor
Léopold Sédar Senghor that he wanted to
start a new party, and Senghor agreed to this. The PDS was founded on
31 July 1974. The party—initially intended as a Labour
party—adopted liberalism in 1976 due to the introduction of a law
permitting the existence of only three parties with three distinct
ideologies, two of which were taken by other parties (liberalism was
therefore the only remaining option). Wade first ran for President in
February 1978 against Senghor, taking 17.38% of the vote. Senghor
gave Wade the nickname "Diombor" (Wolof for hare ). Also in 1978,
Wade was elected to the National Assembly , where he served until
1980. Wade attracted international attention in the wake of Senghor's
announcement in late 1980 that he would resign; as the Secretary
General of the PDS, he issued a statement denouncing the process and
calling instead for the army to oversee a new set of elections.
Subsequently he ran in the presidential elections of 1983 and 1988,
taking second place each time, behind Senghor's successor Abdou Diouf
. Following the 1988 election, he was arrested due to protests
against the results and received a suspended sentence. Subsequently he
went to France, but returned in 1990.
In April 1991, Wade and four other PDS members joined a national
unity government together with the ruling Socialist Party (PS); Wade
became Minister of State without portfolio. In October 1992, he and
the other PDS ministers quit the government due to complaints about
the manner in which the PS was said to control the government. In the
February 1993 presidential election , Wade again took second place,
with 32% of the vote, behind Diouf, who won with 58%. Following the
May 1993 killing of Constitutional Council Vice-President Babacar
Sèye , Wade, along with other PDS leaders, faced police questioning.
On October 1, Wade, his wife, and two PDS members of the National
Assembly (Abdoulaye Faye and
Ousmane Ngom ), were charged with
complicity in the murder, although they were not held in custody or
put on trial. Following riots in February 1994, Wade was arrested
along with many others for allegedly threatening state security. The
charge of complicity in Sèye's murder was dismissed in May 1994, and
Wade and his co-defendants began a hunger strike on June 30. He and
his co-defendants were released on July 4, and the remaining charges
were dismissed on August 30, 1994.
Wade rejoined the government as Minister of State in March 1995, but
he and the other PDS ministers left again in March 1998. Although he
was elected to the National Assembly in the February 1998
parliamentary election , he announced his resignation from the
National Assembly in late July 1998, saying that there were "enough
deputies to do the job in my place".
2000 ELECTION AND FIRST TERM
Wade and the Brazilian Foreign Minister
Celso Amorim , in 2005.
Wade subsequently spent a year in France, returning to
October 27, 1999. In the first round of the 2000 presidential
election , held on February 27, he again took second place, receiving
31% of the vote, but for the first time, Diouf did not win a first
round majority, and consequently a second round was held on March 19.
Wade won this round with 58.49% of the vote, having received the
support of candidates from the first round, including third place
Moustapha Niasse . Wade became President on April 1, 2000
and appointed Niasse as his Prime Minister shortly afterwards. Wade
initially cohabited with the PS, which held a majority in the
legislature until the PDS and its allies (the
Sopi Coalition ) won a
majority in the April 2001 parliamentary election .
A new constitution was adopted in 2001, reducing presidential terms
to five years following the completion of Wade's seven-year term in
2007 ELECTION AND SECOND TERM
President of the United States
President of the United States
George W. Bush
George W. Bush in July
2003 At the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2009
Lula da Silva
Lula da Silva and Wade, in April 2005.
On October 15, 2006, Wade was nominated as presidential candidate of
the PDS for the February 2007 presidential election . One of Wade's
opponents in this election was his former prime minister Idrissa Seck
, who was once considered Wade's protégé, but was arrested in 2005.
Final results released on March 11, 2007, showed Wade winning in the
first round with 55.9% of the vote, far ahead of his nearest
opponents, Seck with about 15% and Socialist Party leader Ousmane
Tanor Dieng with about 13.6%. Dieng and another opposition candidate,
Abdoulaye Bathily , filed appeals regarding the election, but these
were rejected by the Constitutional Council. Wade was sworn in for
his second term on April 3 at the
Leopold Sedar Senghor Stadium in
Dakar, with many African leaders and about 60,000 spectators in
The main opposition parties did not accept Wade's 2007 victory and
disputed his legitimacy as President; they boycotted elections to the
National Assembly and the re-established Senate later in the year.
Wade conclusively stated in an interview published by Le Soleil on May
19, 2008 that there was no longer any possibility of dialogue with the
opposition unless it recognized him as the legitimate President. "Let
them do what they want, it doesn't bother me," he said of the
opposition, "so long as they respect law and order."
At the July 2007
African Union summit in
Ghana , Wade
supported quick formation of the proposed
United States of Africa and
said: "If we fail to unite, we will become weak, and if we live
isolated in countries that are divided, we face the risk of collapsing
in the face of stronger and united economies."
2012 ELECTION FOR THIRD TERM
Senegalese presidential election, 2012
In July 2008, the National Assembly approved a constitutional
amendment increasing the length of the presidential term to seven
years, as it was prior to the adoption of the 2001 constitution. This
extension would not apply to Wade's 2007–2012 term, but Minister of
Justice Madické Niang stressed on this occasion that Wade could
potentially run for re-election in 2012 if he was still healthy.
Later, on September 17, 2009, Wade confirmed that he planned to run
for a third term in 2012 "if God gives me a long life".
Wade, during a 14 July 2011 speech to supporters, used the Wolof
language "Ma waxoon waxeet" ("I said it, I (can) take it back") in
explaining his decision to go back on his 2007 pledge not to run for
another term. The phrase subsequently became a popular rallying cry
for the anti-Wade opposition.
On January 27, 2012,
Abdoulaye Wade was officially approved by the
Constitutional Council to run for a highly controversial third term.
Following this declaration, enraged mobs engaged in violent protests
throughout the city. After the first round vote, Abdoulaye Wade
acknowledged on 27 February 2012 that he had failed to win a majority
in the election and would have to face a run-off. He subsequently
lost the second round of voting, held on 25 March 2012, to the
Macky Sall ; Sall had received the backing of all
of the candidates who were defeated in the first round, and he
defeated Wade by a wide margin. Sall succeeded Wade as President on 2
Following his defeat in the presidential election, Wade remained at
the helm of the PDS, even as a number of the party's key figures
abandoned it. He chose not to stand as a candidate for the July 2012
parliamentary election . The PDS won 12 seats in the vote, marking a
tremendous decrease in the party's parliamentary representation, but
Wade nevertheless said that he viewed the outcome as encouraging. He
said that, contrary to expectations from some quarters that the PDS
would disappear after losing power, it had emerged from the vote as
the largest opposition party and the only one with enough seats to
form a parliamentary group.
In 2015, despite being close to his 90th birthday, Wade brushed aside
suggestions that he should retire, arguing that no credible younger
men had come along to succeed him as head of the PDS and that his
parents both lived and worked to an advanced age.
In the July 2017 parliamentary election , Wade planned to stand as a
candidate at the head of the candidate list of an opposition
coalition. Khalifa Sall , another prominent opposition leader, and his
supporters decided to run separately due to disagreement about whether
Wade or Sall should receive the top spot on the candidate list. The
divided opposition performed poorly in the election; the coalition
backing President Sall won 125 seats, a majority, while Wade's
coalition trailed distantly in second place with 19 seats. As the top
candidate on his coalition's candidate list, Wade himself won a seat,
although he had no intention of actually serving as a Deputy; he
announced his resignation on 10 September 2017, before the National
Assembly even began meeting. He explained that his purpose in running
was merely to support his coalition in the election.
Senegalese presidential election, 2012
Abdoulaye Wade was internationally praised for his handling of the
2012 presidential election. In the aftermath of his defeat, Wade
congratulated his opponent on his victory and peacefully stepped down.
Wade's quick concession was praised by the
African Union , European
United Nations and the
United States . It was pointed out that
the leaders ruling some of Senegal's neighbors (including
Guinea-Bissau ) had all previously used the army to
maintain their grasp on power. Because of this, Wade is considered
among the rare African leaders who are committed to democracy.
Wade's presidency was marred by allegations of corruption, nepotism
and constraints on freedom of the press and other civil liberties.
He was also criticized for excessive spending on what have been
described as "prestige projects". This includes commissioning a 160+
foot bronze statue (the
African Renaissance Monument ), for which Wade
claims he is entitled to 35% of all tourist profits it generates
because of the intellectual property for conceiving the idea.
In a parallel controversy, Wade has been criticized by Christian
Senegal for publicly denying the divinity of Jesus Christ,
comparing him to the statues found in the African Renaissance
Monument, after local imams expressed their opposition to the
monument. He later regretted that his comments had caused religious
offense to Christians.
Wade also received criticism in 2009 for a "goodbye present" he
reportedly gave to a departing IMF official after the two had dinner.
The present turned out to be a bag of money worth almost US$200,000.
Widespread speculation and criticism centered on the possibility that
Wade was grooming his son Karim to succeed him.
Wade is married to
Viviane Wade . Their son,
Karim Wade , served as
head of the national agency of the Islamic Organization Conference and
subsequently was Minister of State for International Cooperation,
Urban and Regional Planning, Air Transport, and Infrastructure from
2009 to 2012. Their daughter, Sindjely Wade, worked as a Special
Assistant to the President and has participated in many Paris-Dakar
In March 2012, Wade announced plans to go to
Saudi Arabia for a
France : Grand Officer of the
Legion of Honour
Legion of Honour
Monaco : Grand Cross of the
Order of Saint-Charles
Order of Saint-Charles (9 November
Wikimedia Commons has media related to ABDOULAYE WADE .
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profits over \'intellectual rights.\'" Retrieved October 7, 2009
* ^ Sénégal : Me
Abdoulaye Wade attaque les statues, l’Eglise
catholique irritée Archived March 1, 2012, at the
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* ^ "
Senegal admits IMF \'money gift\'".
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likely choice", Daily Nation (Kenya), August 6, 2008. Retrieved
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* ^ Nomination by OpenDocument Sovereign Ordonnance n°2.457 of 9th
November 2009 (French)
Abdou Diouf PRESIDENT OF SENEGAL
2000–2012 Succeeded by
Alpha Oumar Konaré
Alpha Oumar Konaré CHAIRPERSON OF THE ECONOMIC COMMUNITY OF WEST
2001–2003 Succeeded by
Léopold Sédar Senghor
Léopold Sédar Senghor
* Abdoulaye Wade
Candidates in the 2007 Senegalese presidential election
* Abdoulaye Wade
* Mamadou Lamine Diallo
Ousmane Tanor Dieng
Cheikh Bamba Dièye
* Mama Adama Guèye
* Alioune Mbaye
Louis Jacques Senghor
* WorldCat Identities
* VIAF : 43769
* LCCN : n90629342
* ISNI : 0000 0001 2117 2571
* GND : 131991256
* SELIBR : 318402
* SUDOC : 029652413
* BNF : cb12123195j (data)