2025 presidential election: Biya, political dribbler, dribbles again!.

President Paul Biya

President Paul Biya, oftentimes referred to as an undecodable political swordfighter, has taken a swift technical move in relation to the 2025 presidential election.

The decision, which has surfaced through a bill seeking to extend the mandate of Members of the National Assembly from March 10, 2025, to March 30, 2026, is being scrutinised by members of the Constitutional Laws Committee of the legislative house. 

The bill, expected to be clapped through by the majority CPDM parliament in the days ahead, has been described as the outplay of Biya’s political hindsight. 

Through the bill, Biya, who is known to be a political dribbler, analysts are saying, has again dribbled the opposition to smoothen his path to victory in 2025.


Technically knocks out Kamto

The bill, set to be adopted in parliament, will automatically knock out Prof Maurice Kamto from being fielded by the opposition Cameroon Renaissance Movement, MRC, party, for the 2025 presidential election.

This is because, the Electoral Code, in Section 121 (1), provides that for an individual to qualify to contest for presidential election, he/she must be invested by a political party or be an independent candidate on condition they put forward at least 300 signatures from the 10 Regions.

As it stands, Kamto, whose MRC party has no Municipal and Regional Councillors as well as Members of Parliament, will only qualify for the 2025 presidentials if he is invested by another party or if he gets the required 300 signatures from elected officials and first-class traditional rulers from the 10 Regions of the country.

Kamto, whose party boycotted the municipal and legislative elections of 2020, had been hoping to make up by winning parliamentary and council seats if the twin polls were to be staged in the first quarter of 2025.

That scenario would have automatically made him eligible for presidential election in October 2025. But with the bill in parliament, Biya has crashed Kamto’s plans.


National Assembly admits bill

The bill was deemed admissible by the Chairmen's Conference that held at the Speaker's Cabinet, Saturday July 6. 

It was communicated to the entire House Chamber during a Plenary Sitting which was chaired by the Speaker of National Assembly, Rt Hon Cavaye Yeguie Djibril. 

The bill has been prepared pursuant to the provisions of Article 15 (4) of the Constitution, which states that: "In case of serious crisis, or where circumstances so warrant, the President of the Republic may, after consultation with the President of the Constitutional Council and Bureaux of the National Assembly and the Senate, request the National Assembly to decide, by a law, to extend or abridge its term of office".

With the formality provided for in Article 15(4) of the Constitution having been respected as per the explanatory statement, “the attached bill proposes an extension of the term of office of Members of the National Assembly, to 30 March 2026”.