The Algerian National Independent Authority for Elections (ANIE) announced on Thursday, that 139 candidates have registered to run for presidential elections slated for 12 December 2019, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed reported.
ANIE Communication Director, Ali Draa, expects the number to rise as the doors for potential candidates will remain open until 25 October.
Two former prime ministers, Ali Benflis and Abdul-Majid Taboun, were among the figures who applied for presidency. They have an advantage when compared to the others, which includes former ministers and deputy ministers.
A number of prominent figures and heads of factions, including the heads of the Movement of Society for Peace and Justice and Development Front, have refused to apply for candidacy believing that the army is not dedicated to carrying out transparent elections.
The former Algerian president, Abdul-Aziz Bouteflika, stepped down in April under mass protests that broke out in February, demanding the removal of the ruling elite and the prosecution of people suspected of involvement in corruption.
The army, the main player in Algeria’s political scene since Bouteflika’s resignation, has repeatedly stated that the election would be the only way out of the crisis, promising that the election authority is empowered to ensure a free vote.