A silent struggle for power is brewing between different interest groups at the top of the Algerian regime ignited by the obvious deteriorating health of President Abdelaziz Bouteflika whose public appearances are a thing of the past.
The media has long been speaking of a soft coup by the brother of the ailing President, Said Bouteflika, who has been introduced gradually as a potential successor to Algerian presidency.
Bouteflika who is said to be suffering from a severe fatigue has been reported to rebuke his current Prime Minister Abdelmjid Teboune who does not seem to advocate Said’s presidency bid.
This crack at the helm of the Algerian regime came about after Teboune ventured to criticize Ali Haddad, who is close to Said Bouteflika.
Said Bouteflika who has vested interests with the business community and who is pulling the strings of Algerian presidency is now more than ever showing his intention of succeeding to his brother through media outlets that turn in his orbit.
For many observers, the election of Abdelaziz Bouteflika for a fourth term is a time buying measure for the vying elites within the Algerian regime to settle their differences and agree on a next President.
The removal of the all-powerful intelligence chief, Tewfik Mediene, in 2014 and the side-lining of senior leaders in the army and the ruling party, the FLN, have all but empowered the clan of Said Bouteflika, who seems now poised more than ever to run for presidential elections.
Through it all, President Abdelaziz Bouteflika has remained silent, communicating through occasional letters to the government, leaving even those closest to him to wonder who is really in command or who is pulling the strings?