Mahamadou Danda

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Mahamadou Danda
Prime Minister of Niger
In office
23 February 2010 – 7 April 2011
President Salou Djibo
Preceded by Ali Badjo Gamatié
Succeeded by Brigi Rafini
Personal details
Born (1951-07-25) 25 July 1951 (age 65)
Tahoua, French West Africa (now Niger)

Mahamadou Danda (born 25 July 1951[1]) is a Nigerien political figure who was appointed as Prime Minister of Niger by the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy (CSRD) on 23 February 2010 and left office on 7 April 2011.


Born in Tahoua in 1951,[1][2] Danda studied in Niamey at the National School of Administration. He continued his studies abroad, ultimately obtaining a degree in political science in France.[2]

Political career[edit]

Danda began working under the regime of Seyni Kountché in the 1970s;[2] he was Sub-Prefect of Niamey from 1979 to 1980 and Sub-Prefect of Filingué from 1983 to 1987.[3] Following Kountché's death, he was appointed to the government by Ali Saibou on 20 November 1987, serving as Minister of Animal Resources and Hydraulics[4] until 15 July 1988, when he was dropped from the government.[5] Subsequently he was Administrative Secretary of the National Executive Bureau of the National Movement for the Development of Society (MNSD)[1][6] in the early 1990s.[6] Danda also served as Permanent Secretary of the Higher Council of National Orientation for a time.[2]

Multiparty elections were held in 1993. Danda was Chief Technical Adviser to the Prime Minister for Institutional Issues from 23 December 1997 to 16 April 1999.[3]

Following the April 1999 coup d'état, Danda, who was considered a representative of civil society,[7] was appointed by the transitional junta as Minister of Communication, Culture, Youth, and Sports, as well as Government Spokesman, on 16 April 1999.[7][8] He remained in his post as Minister of Communication until the military handed power to an elected government in December 1999.[1][9]

2010 events[edit]

Danda, who has studied in Canada, held the post of Political Counsellor at the Canadian Embassy to Niger (as locally-engaged staff) when President Mamadou Tandja was overthrown in another coup on 18 February 2010.[2][3][10] Salou Djibo, the President of the CSRD, then appointed Danda as Prime Minister on 23 February;[9][10][11] however, Danda was not assigned the role of head of government, which was assumed by Djibo in addition to his role as head of state.[11]

Danda, who was not a member of any political party, was perceived as a neutral figure. That quality, in addition to his experience, was generally viewed as the reason for his appointment as Prime Minister.[2] Upon his appointment, Danda said that he had "asked for the necessary guarantees to be sure of committing myself in the process leading to a real restoration of democracy".[12] On 1 March 2010, Djibo appointed a transitional government composed of 20 ministers. Five portfolios were assigned to officers, three of whom (including the Minister of Defense) were generals associated with Tandja.[13]

While Tandja's government consistently sought to downplay the problem of famine and hunger—to the point that it was considered "an almost taboo subject"—the CSRD quickly demonstrated a different approach. On 10 March, Danda issued "an emergency appeal" to the international community for aid. According to Danda, 58% of the population could be affected by lack of food; under Tandja, the number had been placed much lower, at about 20%. Danda discussed the government's plans for emergency relief, and the United Nations and European Union both promised assistance.[14]


  1. ^ a b c d Maman Chaïbou, Répertoire biographique des personnalités de la classe politique, volume 2 (2000), page 463 (French).
  2. ^ a b c d e f Lauranne Provenzano, "Mahamadou Danda, Premier ministre de consensus", Jeune Afrique, 24 February 2010 (French).
  3. ^ a b c "M. Mahamadou Danda, nommé Premier ministre du Niger", Le Sahel, 24 February 2010 (French).
  4. ^ "Décret N° 87-167/PCMS du 20 novembre 1987, portant remaniement ministériel", Nigerien Presidency website (accessed 23 February 2010) (French).
  5. ^ "Décret n° 88-267/PCMS du 15 juillet 1988, fixant la composition du gouvernement", Nigerien Presidency website (accessed 23 February 2010) (French).
  6. ^ a b La situation socio démographique du Niger en 1990 (1992), page 43 (French).
  7. ^ a b "Le gouvernement du Niger, formé le 16 avril 1999" at the Wayback Machine (archived March 2, 2005), Afrique Express (French).
  8. ^ "Décret N° 99-16/PCRN du 16 Avril 1999 portant nomination des membres du Gouvernement", Nigerien Presidency website (accessed 23 February 2010) (French).
  9. ^ a b "Niger junta names civilian premier until elections", Associated Press, 23 February 2010.
  10. ^ a b Boureima Hama, "Niger junta leader appoints premier", AFP, 23 February 2010.
  11. ^ a b "Niger junta names civilian as caretaker prime minister", BBC News, 23 February 2010.
  12. ^ "Niger junta bars itself from future elections", BBC News, 25 February 2010.
  13. ^ "Niger junta names five officers in new cabinet", AFP, 1 March 2010.
  14. ^ "Niger appeals for emergency food aid", AFP, 10 March 2010.
Political offices
Preceded by
Ali Badjo Gamatié
Prime Minister of Niger
Succeeded by
Brigi Rafini