Compaore names new govt

2011-01-17 09:03
Ouagadougou - Burkina Faso's President Blaise Compaore, re-elected last November after 23 years in power, on Sunday named a new government headed by reappointed premier Tertius Zongo.

The 39-member team - which includes eight newcomers - is largely made up of members of the presidential party, the Congress for Democracy and Progress.

Newcomer and former National Assembly speaker Bognessan Arsene Ye was appointed minister of state at the presidency for political reforms, set to oversee changes including the creation of a senate.

Planned reforms also include revising the constitution to enable the head of state to stand again after what should have been his last term in office.

Five ministers have left, including mines and energy minister Abdoulaye Abdoulkader Cisse, who spent more than 15 uninterrupted years in the post.

Compaore, who is 59 and has been in power since 1987, was reelected in the first round of the November 21 presidential election with more than 1.3 million votes, or 80%.

Four of six challengers to Compaore said they would reject the outcome of the vote, citing serious irregularities. But monitors from the African Union and Economic Community of West African States called the poll "transparent".

Compaore, a former army captain, took power in a coup which deposed Thomas Sankara, who was killed. Compaore was elected for the first time in 1991.

Supporters say he has brought stability to the landlocked former French colony and established himself as "mediator-in-chief" for other West African nations beset by crises.

The rural country remains one of the poorest in the world, with nearly half of its population of 16 million living in poverty.

- SAPA
Read more on:    blaise compaore  |  burkina faso  |  west africa
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