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Bassirou Diomaye Faye Becomes Senegal’s New President

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As the fifth and youngest president of Senegal ever, Bassirou Diomaye Faye, the opposition candidate who had previously been imprisoned, took office on Tuesday and vowed to bring about economic growth and stability.

After assuming office at a ceremony he attended with his two wives, Faye declared, “The results of the election showed a profound desire for change.”

In the first round of voting, the 44-year-old former tax inspector easily defeated Amadou Ba, the nominee of the ruling coalition of outgoing President Macky Sall, showing great expectations for change in the roughly 18 million-population nation.

The opening was attended by more than a dozen heads of state and regional delegates, including Presidents Bola Tinubu of Nigeria, Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana, and Moussa Faki Mahamat of the African Union Commission.

Delegates were also dispatched by the military juntas in Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso.

After three years of extraordinary political unrest in Senegal, where juntas have taken power and severed connections with long-standing Western partners in favor of Russia, concerns about democratic backsliding in the coup-prone region of West Africa were allayed by the peaceful transition.

Faye declared, “Senegal will be a country of hope, at peace, with an independent justice system and a stronger democracy,” vowing to conduct government business morally and to expand the nation’s economy.

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