Ex-Senegalese president to retry homecoming

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Associated Press

Posted on April 23, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Updated Thursday, Apr 24 at 1:35 AM

DAKAR, Senegal (AP) — A Senegalese party official says the former president plans to return home on Thursday after finally receiving permission for his plane to land for what was supposed to be his triumphant homecoming after two years abroad.

Senegal, a rare example of democratic rule in Africa, was rocked by street protests during the 2012 elections that paralyzed the capital. Demonstrators called for then-President Abdoulaye Wade not seek a third term. When Wade lost, he withdrew abroad.

But the 87-year-old remains popular with many and as discontent with his successor is growing, he planned to return Wednesday.

He got stuck, however, in Morocco on Wednesday, after Senegalese officials refused to grant his private plane authorization to land, according to Oumar Sarr, an official with Wade's party. Pape Mael Diop of the airport authority had said it never received a landing request.

Sarr said late Wednesday that the authorization was granted late Wednesday and Wade would arrive the following day.

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