Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 6 August 2020

Diplomat Abdelaziz Djerad named Algerian prime minister

Algeria’s newly-elected president has reached beyond the political class to name a prime minister who is an educator and diplomat

Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune meeting with the newly appointed Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad in the capital Algiers. AFP
Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune meeting with the newly appointed Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad in the capital Algiers. AFP

Algeria’s newly elected president reached beyond the political class Saturday to name educator and diplomat Abdelaziz Djerad as prime minister.

President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has charged Mr Djerad with forming a new government, a delicate task in this North African nation divided since the emergence early this year of a pro-democracy movement that boycotted his December 12 election after forcing out predecessor Abdelaziz Bouteflika.

In his first public statement, Mr Djerad, 65, stressed the need to work together to meet “social-economic challenges and pull ourselves out of this delicate period.” He said his top challenge is “recovering confidence in our society,” the official APS news agency reported.

The gas-rich nation’s economy has suffered during this year’s developments, and Mr Tebboune, 74, has not had a smooth transition into office.

Algeria’s powerful army chief, Ahmed Gaid Salah, who helped to push Bouteflika from power and pressed for elections, died of a heart attack days after Mr Tebboune’s inauguration.

Mr Tebboune, widely viewed as the favorite candidate of the military, was discredited in the eyes of the pro-democracy movement for his brief period as prime minister. He was forced out by Bouteflika’s brother Said, a special presidential councillor who was recently convicted for corruption along with two former prime ministers and two powerful intelligence chiefs.

Updated: December 28, 2019 08:06 PM

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