Burkina Faso set to announce interim leader

Burkina Faso is due to announce a new interim president after negotiations between the army, political parties and activist groups.

A list of candidates has been put forward to a 23-member council, which will select a single leader.

Officials in the country signed a charter on Sunday mapping out a year-long transition to elections.

The army took power after President Blaise Compaore was forced to resign on 31 October during mass protests.

Lt Col Isaac Zida, who declared himself head of the West African state, has pledged to hand over power to a civilian authority.

The blueprint for transition was agreed on Thursday. It will install an interim legislative chamber and a transitional leader until elections are organised next year.

Under the plan, the interim president will be chosen by a special college composed of religious, military, political, civil and traditional leaders.

Candidates are expected to include prominent journalists and politicians.

The Roman Catholic church has ruled out suggestions that an archbishop, Paul Ouedraogo, should be chosen, saying he would not be standing.

Once selected, the president will name a prime minister to appoint a 25-member government.

International bodies have threatened sanctions unless civilian rule is restored.

Col Zida’s attempts to suspend the constitution and crack down on dissent sparked fresh unrest late last month.

In a communique on Saturday, Col Zida said the constitution was back in force in order to “allow the start of the establishment of a civilian transition”.

Mr Compaore first seized power in a coup in 1987 and went on to win four disputed elections.

Tens of thousands of people protested in Burkina Faso’s capital, Ouagadougou, in October against moves to allow him to extend his rule.

source : BBC