- Algerian presidential candidates have expressed concern over the lack of funding from the state as the election date draws near. The Algerian constitutional council has endorsed six presidential contenders for the April 2009 election earlier this month.
Independent candidate Mohand Oussaid Belaid said that his team filed a request last week to receive the promised state funding, but they have yet to receive the assistance. "This could indicate a desire to ruin our chances even before the campaign period begins," he said.
The official launch of the campaign is to resume soon, with all the presidential candidates gearing for the elections, but the expected 15 million dinars (US$2.7 million) has not landed in the candidates purses to resume campaigning, opposition reports have said.
The Algerian National Front (FNA) spokesman Mohamed Tin said the party has chosen to run a modest campaign to overcome the shortage of money, saying the party was able to collect a "small budget" for their candidate.
"To raise funds, we resorted to contributions from party offices in all 48 campaigners and our MPs. The aid granted by the state won't even be enough to cover our preparations for the campaign," he said.
Meanwhile, five Algerians have been killed since Saturday, as violence escalated ahead of the presidential elections slated for the beginning of next month.
According to local news reports, Algerian officials have also said they are expecting terrorists to increase terror attacks within the coming weeks in order to derail the presidential elections.
The run-up to the election has been clouded by violence, with several attacks waged by terror groups on security forces over the past couple of years and especially in the past few months. Thirty-three people, most of them security personnel, were killed in attacks in February alone.
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