Algeria lawmakers to name interim president on Tuesday

He is to serve for up to 90 days, during which a presidential election must be organised.
(FILES) In this file photo taken on September 19, 2016 President of the Algerian Senate Abdelkader Bensalah is pictured at the Elysee Palace in Paris. – Algeria’s veteran President Abdelaziz Bouteflika informed the Constitutional Council that he is resigning in a move that is to take effect on Tuesday, state television said. Under the constitution, once his resignation is tendered, the speaker of Algeria’s upper house of parliament, Abdelkader Bensalah, would act as interim leader for up to 90 days during which a presidential election must be organised. (Photo by PATRICK KOVARIK / AFP)

Algeria’s parliament is set to meet on Tuesday to name an interim successor to president Abdelaziz Bouteflika, state media reported.

“It was decided to hold a meeting of the two chambers of parliament on Tuesday at 9:00 am,” the upper house of parliament said in a statement carried by the official APS news agency.

Algeria’s constitution stipulates that the speaker of the upper house of parliament, currently 77-year-old Abdelkader Bensalah, should take the presidential reins. 

He is to serve for up to 90 days, during which a presidential election must be organised.

The lawmakers are expected to finalise the “vacancy of the post of presiden and then designate Abdelkader Bensalah as head of state”, said communications head for the upper house of parliament Salim Rabahi.

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Faced with massive street protests across the North African country, veteran leader Bouteflika ceded power after two decades in power. 

The 82-year-old had come under mounting pressure to step down over his decision to seek a fifth term despite rarely being seen in public after suffering a stroke in 2013.

Algerians took to the streets across the country Friday in a continued push for sweeping reform, calling out Boutleflika regime stalwarts who have been entrusted with overseeing the political transition. 

The are targeting a triumvirate they dub “3B” – Abdelakder Bensalah, head of the constitution council Tayeb Belaiz, and Prime Minister Noureddine Bedoui.

Critics say all three have always been faithful Bouteflika servants, who should follow his lead and resign.

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Protesters are calling for transitional institutions to be set up to implement reforms and guarantee free elections.

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