Polisario founder's brother challenges leadership with reform call

Bachir Mustapha Sayed / DR
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A prominent figure within the Polisario movement, Bachir Mustapha Sayed, the brother of the group's founder, proposes to organize «a general conference to evaluate» the situation in the Tindouf camps and «take exceptional measures».

Sayed presents his initiative as the only remedy to the chaos and the decline of the Polisario. He also addressed his appeal to the elements of the Front's militias so that they «elect their representatives to the general conference».

Bachir Mustapha emphasized that «the organization of three congresses has not managed to rectify the situation». It is worth noting that under the leadership of Brahim Ghali, the Polisario held its conclaves in July 2016, December 2019, and the last one in January 2023. Sayed estimated that «the general conference», which he hopes for, should allow his movement to «drive out the forces of occupation» from the Sahara.

Sayed does not hide his opposition to the line followed by Brahim Ghali, particularly the pursuit of the war against Morocco, launched on November 13, 2020. At the January 2023 congress, he had attempted to challenge Ghali's bid for a third term.

Nevertheless, his candidacy only garnered 563 votes (31%) against 1253 congress attendees (69%) for the current Secretary General of the Polisario. 18 months after his defeat, he thus launches a reform movement. But his initiative will require the prior blessing of Algiers.

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