Mr. Faustin Archange Touadéra secured about 63% of the votes, during the recent run-off elections, to become the new president of the Central African Republic (CAR). His election brought hope for a new beginning and a brighter future for this nation facing enormous crises.
The Central African constitutional court confirmed on Tuesday, March 1, that Faustin Archange Touadéra (58) secured about 63% of the votes, during the recent run-off elections, to become the new president of the Central African Republic (CAR). Mr. Touadéra is a Christian who served as Prime Minister in the pre-crisis administration of President Francois Bozize. His election has brought hope for a new beginning and a brighter future, but his government is facing many challenges.
One of the biggest challenges is reconciling the communities that were polarised along religious lines through the crisis. President Touadéra told the BBC, “These elections are important but they are not the only step out of this crisis. We have to create the conditions for dialogue between the two communities. We will do everything we can so that Central Africans can live together in Central African Republic.”
President Touadéra is also facing a humanitarian crisis created by the events of the last three years. According to the World Food Program (WFP), at least half of the population (or 2.5 million people) is facing hunger. The number of people battling hunger had doubled from 2015 as the country’s overall crop production in 2015 remained 54% below the pre-crisis average.
“Touadéra has vowed to make peace and reconciliation his priority. A major issue will be the demobilisation and integration of the Muslim Seleka and the anti-Balaka militias. Central African Republic has been ravaged by a sectarian civil war in the past three years and president Touadera faces the enormous challenge of reconciling the country’s Muslims and Christians after the horrors of the war. Unless he succeeds, there is the risk that the country will be consumed by the kind of violence and instability, which has characterised Central African Republic over the past three years. That would obviously be disastrous for Christians as well as for Muslims in the country,” says Yonas Dembele, persecution analyst at Open Doors World Watch Research.