Politics of Mali

Cercles of Mali Constitution of Mali List of political parties in Mali
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Until the military coup of March 22, 2012[1][2] and a second military coup in December 2012[3] the politics of Mali took place in a framework of a semi-presidential representative democratic republic, whereby the President of Mali is head of state with a Presidentially appointed Prime Minister as the head of government, and of a multi-party system.

Executive power is exercised by the government. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the National Assembly. The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature.

The Economist Intelligence Unit rated Mali a "hybrid regime" in 2019.[4]

On 18 August 2020 a coup d'état ousted the president and prime minister.

Executive branch

Main office holders
Office Name Party Since
President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta Rally for Mali 4 September 2013
Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubèye Maïga Alliance for Solidarity in Mali 31 December 2017

Under Mali's 1992 constitution, the president is chief of state and commander in chief of the armed forces. The president is elected to 5-year terms by direct popular vote. He is limited to two terms. The president appoints the prime minister as head of government. The president chairs the Council of Ministers (the prime minister and currently 27 other ministers), which adopts a proposals for laws submitted to the National Assembly for approval of them.

Legislative branch

The National Assembly (Assemblée Nationale) has 160 members, elected for a five-year term, 147 members elected in single-seat constituencies and 13 members elected by Malians abroad. The National Assembly is the sole legislative arm of the government. Representation is apportioned according to the population of administrative districts. Election is direct and by party list. The term of office is 5 years.

The Assembly meets for two regular sessions each year. It debates and votes on legislation proposed either by one of its members or by the government and has the right to question government ministers about government actions and policies. Eight political parties, aggregated into four parliamentary groups, are represented in the Assembly. ADEMA currently holds the majority; minority parties are represented in all committees and in the Assembly directorate.

Political parties and elections

Mali's constitution provides for a multi-party democracy, with the only restriction being a prohibition against parties based on ethnic, religious, regional, or gender lines. In addition to those political parties represented in the National Assembly, others are active in municipal councils.

Presidential elections

Results of the second round of the Mali Presidential Election 2018 in each cercle of Mali
Candidate Party First round Second round
Votes % Votes %
Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta Rally for Mali 1,331,132 41.70 1,798,632 67.17
Soumaïla Cissé Union for the Republic and Democracy 567,679 17.78 879,235 32.83
Aliou Diallo 256,404 8.03
Cheick Modibo Diarra 236,025 7.39
Housseini Amion Guindo Convergence for the Development of Mali 124,506 3.90
Oumar Mariko African Solidarity for Democracy and Independence 74,300 2.33
Modibo Kone 72,941 2.29
Choguel Kokala Maïga 68,970 2.16
Harouna Sankare 57,406 1.80
Mamadou Oumar Sidibe 54,274 1.70
Modibo Sidibe Alternative Forces for Renewal and Emergence 45,453 1.42
Kalfa Sanogo Alliance for Democracy in Mali (not official)[5] 38,892 1.22
Mamadou Diarra 36,124 1.13
Modibo Kadjoke 30,479 0.95
Moussa Sinko Coulibaly 30,232 0.95
Adama Kane 26,084 0.82
Daba Diawara 22,991 0.72
Mountaga Tall 20,312 0.64
Dramane Dembele Alliance for Democracy in Mali (not official) 18,737 0.59
Mohamed Ali Bathily 17,712 0.55
Hamadoun Toure 17,087 0.54
Yeah Samake 16,632 0.52
Mamadou Traore 15,502 0.49
Madame Djeneba N'diaye 12,275 0.38
Invalid/blank votes 224,069 85,536
Total 3,416,218 100 2,763,339 100
Registered voters/turnout 8,000,462 42.70 8,000,462 34.54
Source: Constitutional Court, Government of Mali

Parliamentary elections

Party Votes % Seats +/–
Rally for Mali 708,716 29.4 66 +55
Union for the Republic and Democracy 546,628 22.6 17 –17
Alliance for Democracy in Mali 277,517 11.5 16 –35
Alternative Forces for Renewal and Emergence 791,613 32.8 6 New
Convergence for the Development of Mali 5 New
African Solidarity for Democracy and Independence 5 +1
National Congress for Democratic Initiative 4 –3
Party for National Rebirth 3 –1
Party for Economic Development and Solidarity 3 New
Patriotic Movement for Renewal 3 –5
Alliance for Solidarity in Mali 3 New
Democratic Alliance for Peace 2 New
Social Democratic Convention 2 New
Movement for the Independence, Renaissance, and Integration of Africa 2 0
Malian Union for the African Democratic Rally 2 +1
Change Party 1 New
Union for Democracy and Development 1 –2
Party for the Restoration of Malian Values 1 New
Union of Patriots for Renewal 1 New
Action Convergence for the People 0
African Convergence for Renewal 0
African Front for Mobilisation and Alternation 0
African Movement for Democracy and Integration 0
African Social Democratic Party 0
Alliance for Mali 0
Alliance for the Promotion and Development of Mali 0
Alliance of Convinced Nationalists for Development 0
Alternative Bloc for African Renewal 0
Alternation Bloc for Renewal, Integration, and African Cooperation 0
Bolen Mali Deme Ton 0
Citizens' Party for Revival 0
Dambe Mali Alliance 0
Democratic Action for Change and Alternation in Mali 0
Democratic Consultation 0
Ecologist Party of Mali 0
Future and Development in Mali 0
Jamaa 0
Liberal Democratic Party 0
Luminary Party for Africa 0
Malian Rally for Labour 0
Movement for a Common Destiny 0
Movement for Democracy and Development 0
Movement of Patriots for Social Justice 0
Movement of the Free, United and Combined Populations 0
National Alliance for Construction 0
National Convention for African Solidarity 0
National Union for Renewal 0
Party for Civic and Patriotic Action 0
Party for Development and Social 0
Party for Education, Culture, Health and Agriculture 0
Party for Independence, Democracy and Solidarity 0
Party for Solidarity and Progress 0
Party for the Difference in Mali 0
Party of Democratic Renewal and Labour 0
Rally for Change 0
Rally for Democracy and Progress 0
Rally for Development and Solidarity 0
Rally for Education about Sustainable Development 0
Rally for Justice and Progress 0
Rally for Labour Democracy 0
Rally for Social Justice 0
Rally for the Development of Mali 0
Rally of the Republicans 0
Sikikafo Oyedamouyé 0
Social Democratic Party 0
Socialist Party 0
Socialist and Democratic Party 0
Synergy for a New Mali 0
Union for a People's Movement for Reform 0
Union for Democracy and Alternation 0
Union for Peace and Democracy 0
Union for the Development of Mali 0
Union of Democratic Forces 0
Union of Patriots for the Republic 0
Union of the Movements and Alliances for Mali 0
Independents 4 –11
Invalid/blank votes 121,041 4.8
Total 2,535,515 100 147 –13
Registered voters/turnout 6,564,026 38.6
Source: Ministry of the Interior[permanent dead link], IPU, Adam Carr, Abamako

In the second round, out of 5,951,838 registered voters, 2,221,283 cast a vote - with 2,122,449 being valid - totalling a 37.32% turnout, according to the Constitutional Court[6]

Judicial branch

Mali's legal system is based on codes inherited at independence from France. New laws have been enacted to make the system conform to Malian life, but French colonial laws not abrogated still have the force of law. The constitution provides for the independence of the judiciary.

The Ministry of Justice appoints judges and supervises both law enforcement and judicial functions. The Supreme Court has both judicial and administrative powers. Under the constitution, there is a separate constitutional court and a high court of justice with the power to try senior government officials in cases of treason.

Administrative divisions

Administratively, Mali is divided into ten regions (Gao, Ménaka, Kayes, Kidal, Koulikoro, Mopti, Ségou, Sikasso, Tombouctou, Taoudénit) and the capital district of Bamako, each under the authority of an elected governor. Each region consists of five to nine districts (or Cercles), administered by Prefects. Cercles are divided into communes, which, in turn, are divided into villages or quarters.

A decentralisation and democratisation process began in the 1990s with the establishment of 702 elected municipal councils, headed by elected mayors, and previously appointed officials have been replaced with elected officials, which culminates in a National council of local officials. Other changes included greater local control over finances, and the reduction of administrative control by the central government.

Foreign relations



  1. ^ "UN Security council condemns Mali coup". 23 March 2012 – via www.telegraph.co.uk.
  2. ^ 2012, 9:19PM GMT 22 Mar (22 March 2012). "US condemns Mali coup amid reports of looting". telegraph.co.uk.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  3. ^ Nossiter, Adam (11 December 2012). "Cheick Modibo Diarra, Mali's Prime Minister, Resigns After Arrest" – via NYTimes.com.
  4. ^ The Economist Intelligence Unit (8 January 2019). "Democracy Index 2019". Economist Intelligence Unit. Retrieved 13 January 2019.
  5. ^ The party officially supports Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta: Présidentielle 2018: l'Adema soutient le président IBK Archived 2018-11-30 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Second round data (page 492)