Presidential elections will be held in Djibouti on 9 April 2021. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote, a second round will be held on 23 April.
The long-time president of Djibouti, Ismaïl Omar Guelleh, has launched his re-election campaign in the run-up to national elections on 9 April.
With the exception of Zakaria Ismael Jafar, an “anti-system” independent candidate, Guelleh is set to run for his fifth term unopposed. His challengers in the 2016 election have all called for a boycott of the ballot.
The fact that Guelleh is comfortably settling into his third decade in office hints at the state of affairs in this strategically important country.
Though Djibouti is a tiny nation of less than one million inhabitants, it’s perched right at the mouth of the Strait of Bab-el-Mandeb, the maritime corridor for 40% of the world’s oil and entry point to the Suez and Panama canals.
The waterway teems with activity, and is known as one of the most sensitive regions for world trade.
Sources and further reading:
Djibouti increases reliance on Beijing, but at what cost?
Al-Shabaab calls for attacks on U.S, French interests in Djibouti
Taking Stock of Africa’s 2021 Elections
Djibouti: President Guelleh Set to Run for Fifth Term