Wednesday, 21 August 2013
Algeria: No change in top public jobs
The usual round of personnel changes among senior judges, walis (provincial governors), and ambassadors did not take place this summer. There is, of course, a regular rotation within the ranks of senior officialdom, but when these changes happen during a parliamentary recess, they are often politically motivated.
The health of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who signs the decrees, is certainly a factor, but observers also argue that the regime is unwilling to go ahead with any shuffle because it fears that a new administration could escape its control during this highly volatile period.
Additionally, political analysts believe that influential – and older – figures within the regime are blocking a proposed policy of forced retirement from public administration at the age of 60. With a huge demographic youth bulge failing to push its way into the system and many institutions dominated by much older officials, this idea is superficially attractive.
It is nevertheless unlikely that any radical reforms along these lines will be implemented soon. The 65-year-old rime minister, Abdelmalek Sellal , is said to have ordered the drafting of several alternative recommendations to avoid further paralysis at state institutions due to age.
For more news and expert analysis about Algeria, please see Algeria Focus and Algeria Politics & Security.
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