Senegal - Youssou Ndour backs Macky Sall

2012-03-01 18:11

Dakar - Senegal's music icon Youssou Ndour on Thursday threw his weight behind presidential hopeful Macky Sall in his bid to thwart Abdoulaye Wade's bid to win a third term in a run-off election next month.

Speaking after a meeting with Sall, Ndour said that nearly 70 % of voters had shown they wanted to see the back of the 85-year-old when they cast their ballots in favour of opposition candidates in Sunday's first round.

"The change is already there, now it is just a matter of putting it into action," Ndour told journalists in brief comments after the meeting.

The Grammy-winning star's spokesperson told journalists that "Macky Sall has already agreed to" several unspecified demands that Ndour had made as a condition for his support.

"Youssou Ndour will support Macky Sall in the second round of the election," said the spokesperson, Aliou Ndiaye. "Youssou Ndour has one rallying cry, that Wade gets out," the spokesperson added.

Senegal's most famous export, Ndour announced in January that he planned to run in the presidential race, only for the country's highest court to refuse his candidacy on the grounds that he had not received enough nominations.

However the 52-year-old has remained at the forefront of opposition protests against Wade who is seeking to rule into his 90s having circumvented a two-term limit he himself introduced.

Ndour held a 45-minute meeting with Sall who was once a protege of Wade.

The incumbent came first with 34.85% while Sall trailed with 26.57%. They will face off in elections, most likely to be held on March 18.

Sall welcomed Ndour's support, saying he in return has asked that the singer lift his moratorium on concerts and perform a "mega-concert" on April 4, the country's independence day.

- SAPA

Read more on:    macky sall  |  youssou ndour  |  abdoulaye wade  |  senegal  |  west africa
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