President Alassane Ouattara
President Alassane Ouattara

The Ivorian government resigned on Wednesday in a move President Alassane Ouattara said would bring more “efficiency” to the West African state just two months after he was re-elected. Prime Minister Daniel Kablan Duncan presented his resignation and that of his government at what was to have been the first cabinet meeting of the year in a move many expected. A new cabinet would be “put in place in the coming days, targeting greater cohesion and more efficiency of government action”, Mr Ouattara said.

He did not indicate whether he would retain Mr Kablan Duncan, a 73-year-old economist, as premier or select a new head of government as he moulds a “new Côte d’Ivoire” to draw a line under the turmoil engendered by the civil war in 2011.

Re-elected for a second-five year term on October 25, Mr Ouattara has said that he wants to deepen national reconciliation and draw up a new constitution that he plans to put to a referendum.

Following the vote, which observers hailed as generally smooth and peaceful, Mr Ouattara himself indicated he wanted to see fresh faces in government, including more women in cabinet posts.

But he praised Mr Kablan Duncan’s team, expressing gratitude for “your competence, your leadership and your action at the head of the government”, and hailing the cabinet for its “good conduct” in state affairs.

Addressing the president, Mr Kablan Duncan explained that the decision to resign was motivated by Mr Ouattara’s desire to bring “greater efficiency” to the management of government affairs.

“At the last 2015 cabinet meeting on December 23, you expressed your wish to inject a new dynamic into government action, undertaking governments reshuffle targeting greater efficiency in dealing with our fellow citizens’ primary concerns.”

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