According to a confirmation from the national army of Chad read on national television, the newly re-elected President Idriss Déby has died of wounds he received while commanding his army in battles against rebels in the north.
“Idriss Déby Itno has just breathed his last defending the sovereign nation on the battlefield,” said army spokesman General Azem Bermandoa Agouna on the morning of 20 April. He then announced that the government as well as the National Assembly will be dissolved, and replaced by a transition government.
This transition government will lead for a period of 18 months, according to the charter adopted on that morning, by a military council headed by Mahamat Idriss Déby. The latter, Itno’s son, is a general in the Chadian army, who for many years has led the Direction Générale des Services de Sécurité des Institutions de l’État (DGSSIE) [General Directorate of Security Services for State Institutions], which includes the presidential guard.
Idriss Déby Itno’s eyes and ears
Raised by the deceased head of state’s mother, 37 year-old Déby inherited the nickname “Kaka” (“grandmother” in Chadian Arabic). Trained at the Groupement des Écoles Militaires Interarmées du Tchad [Joint military schools in Chad] during the mid-2000s, he then enrolled at the Lycée Militaire in Aix-en-Provence, France, but spent only one term there before returning home.
The article continues below
Get your free PDF: Top 200 banks 2019
The race to transform
Complete the form and download, for free, the highlights from The Africa Report’s Exclusive Ranking of Africa’s top 200 banks from last year. Get your free PDF by completing the following form
Appointed by his father to the DGSSIE, he has spent his entire career there. As a young officer in 2009, he took part in the Battle of Am Dam, defeating his cousin Timan Erdimi’s rebels. Erdimi has been leading rebellions ever since his exile to Doha. “Kaka” then began moving up the ranks. From 2010, he commanded the armoured division of the army’s elite corps and from 2012, the all-powerful presidential guard.