Abdelaziz Bouteflika, 82, the president of Algeria who has ruled for 20-years, announced earlier today that he will not seek a fifth-term as ruler, thus, he has finally bowed to weeks of protests from Algeria's youth opposed to his marathon-years at the helm of the nation of 41 million people.
Bouteflika's announcement came a day after his return to Algeria from Switzerland, where he had an extended stay since suffering a stroke back in 2013. He won a fourth-term in office in 2014, even after suffering a stroke and with no direct campaigning. His recent absentee announcement to seek a fifth-term in office triggered massive protests from Algeria's youth, who saw a divergence in their aspired future from any Algeria under the aging leader. The ailing president yielded to the protests today in announcing he would not seek a fifth-term.
Yet, as some Algerians celebrated the no-run announcement, the nation was informed that the president, in light of his not running, would postpone the April 18 presidential election until after a national conference on political and constitutional reforms to be completed by the end of 2019. No set day was announced for the elections.
Therefore, in spite of Bouteflika's action to calm protest camps in Algeria by announcing not to run for a marathon-fifth-term, his postponement of the presidential vote in essence still extends his rule and will over the Algerian people.