Chad’s long time ruling dictator Idriss Déby, addressed as Marshal Idriss Déby Itno, has died from combat wounds, following intense fighting against rebels on Sunday and Monday. He was replaced by his 37-year-old son, General Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno.
The U.S. State Department offered condolences to the people of Chad and said the U.S. supports a “peaceful transition of power in accordance with the Chadian constitution.”
Deadly Rebels Against a Divided Army
According to sources in the region, the rebels include Boko Haram and groups linked to al-Qaida and Islamic State in the Sahel. The rebels form the Force for Change and Concord in Chad (FACT) and are based in the Northern Chad and southern Libya.
The rebels have been advancing rapidly, pushing back the attacks of a weakening Chadian army. The army was weakened by divisions, when some high ranking military officers and politicians who opposed the dictatorship of Idriss Deby ceased to support the faction led by Idriss Deby and his son, Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno.
The divisions have allowed the rebels to advance to less than 200 Km of the capital Ndjamena.
This prompted Idriss Deby to go to the front, to take control of operations and personally lead the combats. That is when he was shot during intense combats.
The Legacy of Another African Dictator.
Idriss Déby ruled Chad for more that 30 years, after seizing power in a coup in December 1990, as a leader of a rebellion against President Hissène Habré. He has since survived various rebellions and coup attempts against his own rule. He won elections in 1996 and 2001. He then eliminated term limits in the constitution, which allowed him to claim the elections in 2006, 2011, 2016, and 2021. In 2020, he gave himself the title of Marshal.
The new constitution of 2018 would have allowed him to stay in power until 2033.
The 2021 elections were held last week. Before the elections he said: “I know in advance that I will win, as I have done for the last 30 years.”
The provisional election results announced on Monday, April 19, 2021, just a day before his death, had given him 79% of the votes. Now, he is dead.
Following Idriss Déby's death, the army disolved the Chadian Parliament and replaced it by a Transitional Military Council. The Transitional Military Council is led by Déby’s 37-year-old son, General Mahamat Idriss Déby Itno. The son he had been grooming will have to face the aftermath and the consequences of his long term dictatorship.
According to the latest reports from the area, the Islamist rebels have made significant advances towards the capital, once the news of Déby’s death was confirmed. The various factions in the army appear to also have started fighting each other, as the rebels are advancing.
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Idriss Deby's Son: Legacy of Kleptocrat Dictators, Sons, and Daughters in Africa.
Several African dictators have behaved like Idriss Deby and have changed the constitutions of their countries to remain in power and have been grooming their sons or daughters to replace them, when they become incapacitated or just in case. These sons and daughters have been protected by widespread corruption, kleptocracy, divisions, and repressions.
These dictators include Yoweri Museveni of Uganda (see here (See here: Uganda Dictator Yoweri Museveni Tells Media Reasons for Clinging on Power: Ugandans are Fools and Without Direction and Western Media is Ignorant and Arrogant), Denis Sassou Nguesso of the Republic of the Congo (see AfroAmerica Network: Kleptocrat Dictators and Sons: US vs. Denis Christel Sassou-Nguesso),
Paul Kagame of Rwanda ( see here: Ailing Rwandan Paul Kagame's Attempts to Cling to Power Through His Daughter Ange Kagame).
Recently the US Government has sanctioned Yoweri Museveni of Uganda. There are expectations that the US Government may sanction more african dictators.
To address some of the major cases on kleptocracy and corruption, the US has set up a special unit, at the Justice Department, known as the Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative, under Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section (AFMLS). So far, the unit has pursued cases involving dictators, corrupt foreign officials and royalty (Check out AfroAmerica Network articles related to Kleptocray Here) and (see AfroAmerica Network: Angola's new President Joao Lourenco Sacks Jose Eduardo Dos Santos' Daughter: Is the End of African Dynasties Getting Near?)
@AfroAmerica Network, 2021