Since February, Algerians have been protesting against their governance model. Although peaceful, the protests have been large-scale and consistent and have led to the unexpected resignation of the President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who had governed the country with the backing of its elite known as ‘Le Pouvoir’ since 1999. Following his resignation on 03/04/2019, calls for a complete political overhaul and anti-corruption campaign have not abated, and have stimulated some action by the interim government; notably the arrests of 5 billionaires with close links to the Bouteflika regime, and the detention of former Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia under charges of misuse of public funds. However, genuine deep reform is unlikely in the near term. Army chief Lieutenant General Gaid Salah remains a pivotal figure and de facto kingmaker; the above arrests came only after Salah asserted that members of the ruling elite would be prosecuted for corruption and may also be motivated by personal interests.

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