Burkina Faso’s authorities on Monday named former foreign minister Michel Kafando as the country's transitional president, Reuters reported. The move comes as Burkina Faso is moving back toward democracy after a brief military takeover.
The 72-year old Michel Kafando will appoint the country's prime minister, who will, in turn, name a 25-member government. But Kafando, who was picked from a pool of five candidates by a committee after a closed-door meeting on Sunday, will not be allowed to stand for elections scheduled to be held late next year. The 23-member committee that selected Kafando had members from the army, traditional and religious groups, civil society and the political opposition, Reuters reported.
"The committee has just designated me to guide temporarily the destiny of our country. This is more than an honor. It's a true mission which I will take with the utmost seriousness," Kafando said, according to Reuters.
The country’s previous president Blaise Compaore was ousted from his post on Oct. 31 following public protests. Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Zida took over the country's leadership claiming that he would be president until elections took place in the country, after suspending the national assembly and the country’s constitution, which states that the parliament speaker would be the rightful successor to the presidency.
Following threats of sanctions from the African Union and the United Nations, the military reportedly decided to return power to civilian authorities within two weeks.
Previously, Kafando was an ambassador for the former French colony at the U.N., and was the president of the Security Council for one year.