Paul Biya celebrates 40 years’ rule over Cameroon
The 89-year-old Cameronian presidential, who resides in Switzerland, is Africa’s second longest serving leader having come into power in 1982.
President Paul Biya and his supporters are holding events this week ahead of celebrations Sunday marking the Cameroonian leader’s 40 years in power.
On Thursday, Voice Of America reported that the Cameroon People’s Democratic Movement (CPDM) dispatched party officials to towns and villages to organise conferences and mobilise more support for Mr Biya.
In February, Cameroon threw birthday celebrations across the country for Mr Biya, who turned 89, making him Africa’s oldest and second longest-serving leader after Teodoro Obiang Nguema, of Equatorial Guinea who has been in power since 1979. These celebrations were held in absentia as Mr Biya resides in Switzerland.
Mr Biya became president in 1982, taking over from Cameroon’s first president, Ahmadou Ahijo. Mr Biya had previously served as prime minister since 1975. Since 1992, he has won all multiparty elections despite accusations of heavy election rigging from opposition parties.
In 2007, Mr Biya announced his intent to eliminate the two-term limit. In February 2008, protests were held against his decision, and hundreds of protesters were killed, and thousands were arrested.
In 2008, the constitutional revision was voted on by the National Assembly, and in 2011, Mr Biya was reelected with 78 per cent of the vote.