Chad Ex-Opposition Figure Saleh Kebzabo Named Prime Minister 

Veteran Chadian politician and former opposition figure Saleh Kebzabo has been appointed prime minister, according to a decree issued Wednesday by military leader and interim president Mahamat Idriss Deby Itno.

Former journalist Kebzabo, 75, ran four times for the presidency against Deby’s father, Idriss Deby Itno, who was killed during an operation against rebels in April 2021 and was succeeded by a junta headed by his son, a 38-year-old five-star general.

Kebzabo is “named prime minister,” according to the decree issued by Deby.

The junta had originally declared it would restore civilian rule after 18 months in power, and Deby had at first promised he would not take part in the future elections.

But as the 18-month deadline neared, a nationwide forum staged by Deby reset the clock.

Last weekend it approved a new 24-month timeframe for holding elections, named Deby “transitional president” for the interim and declared he could be a candidate in the poll.

Deby was sworn in on Monday, vowing to name a “government of national union” within days.

The outgoing premier was 55-year-old political veteran Albert Pahimi Padacke, who had served for 18 months and had also been prime minister under Deby’s father.

He formally resigned on Tuesday along with his government.

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