Algeria / Politics /
shādhliyy bni jadīd
Other spelling: Chadli
(1929-) Algerian president 1979-1992.
In an Algerian context, Benjedid was a moderate politician, promoting civil freedoms, improved women's rights. He was also central in introducing a new constitution and a multi-party democracy, and he eased up many governmental structures and reduced the governmental control of individuals and groups.
Benjedid's politics involved more economic, but fe faced problems with falling oil prices through the 1980's, which came at the same time as the spread of heavy Islamist propaganda across the nation.
Benjedid saw that the actual impact of his power was challenged, both from Islamist forces, and from the military. On a wider scale, this involved pressure from Muslim and Arab groups and countries, and Algeria's need to be on good terms with Western powers. This would much limit his actual ability to carry through his aims.
Under most of his rule, Algeria continued to be one of the leading Third World countries in the world. Unfortunately, his presidency would also bring that position to its end, especially because of the Algerian Civil War, which came as a result of political and social changes during his presidency.
1929 April 14: Born in Boutelda, near Annaba, into a fairly poor family.
1954: Joins the Muslim side of the escalating Algerian War, both the FLN and the ALN.
1961: Chadly is appointed to command the Northern Military Zone.
1962: Appointed major.
1965: Supports Boumedienne in his coup against President Ben Bella, and in reward, he is appointed one of 5 members of the Council of the Revolution.
1969: Appointed colonel.
1978 November 22: Appointed Minister of Defense. Due to the health condition of President Boumedienne, rule over Algeria is transferred to the Defense Ministry, by which Chadly shared effective control of Algeria together with Abdullah Belhouchet.
1979 January 31: Is nominated to become president of Algeria, , being a compromise candidate of different factions.
July: Orders the release of former president Ben Bella from house arrest.
February 9: Is elected president of Algeria following the death of Boumedienne.
1984: A new Family Law is passed, involving conservative and Islamist values.
1985: Riots across Algeria.
1988: New wave of riots across Algeria.
1989: A new constitution is adopted.
1991 December: in the first round of parliamentary elections, the Islamist FIS wins 188 seats, FLN only 15.
1992 January 11: Is forced to resign as president by a military junta.