Central African Republic Holding Referendum On New Constitution

BANGUI (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 30th July, 2023) The Central African Republic (CAR) is holding a referendum on the adoption of a new constitution, which provides for the extension of the presidential term from five to seven years and the removal of restrictions on the number of these terms, a Sputnik correspondent reported on Sunday.

The referendum was announced in late May by car President Faustin-Archange Touadera, whose second presidential term is coming to an end with currently no option for reelection. Mass demonstrations in support of the constitutional amendments took place across the country following the announcement.

CAR polling stations opened at 06:00 local time (05:00 GMT) on Sunday and are due to close at 16:00. The country's residents can vote for or against the adoption of the new constitution.

In mid-June, the United Nations urged the CAR authorities to ensure that the referendum is peaceful and that public freedoms, such as association, peaceful assembly and speech, are preserved.

The current CAR constitution was adopted in March 2016. Touadera was elected president in 2016 and reelected in 2020. Under the current constitution, he cannot run for a third presidential term.