Institute for Social Science Research on Algeria

The 2020 Constitutional Amendment in Algeria : A de Jure Militarised ultra-Presidency


On November 1, 2020, Algerians were called to vote for yet another revision of Colonel Boumediene’s Constitution of November 22, 1976. The official turnout of the referendum, organised during a global pandemic and in a context of repression, turned out to be the lowest in Algeria’s history: Only 23.84% of Algerians voted for 66.80% of favorable votes. This paper explains that the two most significant characteristics of the new constitution are: (1) The constitutionalization of the political role of the army as the guardian of the vital and strategic interests of the country, (2) The endurance of the exorbitant powers attributed to the president of the republic as in the 1976 and 1996 constitutions.