Latin American Weekly Report

17/07/2020 - Bouterse bows out in Suriname as Granger clings on in Guyana

Suriname’s Desi Bouterse transferred the presidential sash to Chandrikapersad Santokhi on 16 July. Bouterse relinquished power nearly a month early, leaving to his successor a legacy of debt from cronyism and corruption, compounded by the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, during his populist presidency. But the international community moved swiftly to welcome Santokhi as soon as Suriname’s national assembly voted on 13 July for him to assume the presidency at the head of his broad coalition. The same cannot be said for neighbouring Guyana, where President David Granger is still refusing to concede defeat, stoking political and social tensions, more than four months on from the country’s general election. The international community is ratcheting up the pressure on the Granger government, with strong rhetoric now being accompanied by action.

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