: سعيد بوتفليقة
, Berber languages
: ⵙⵄⵉⴷ ⴰⵠⵓⵜⴼⵉⵇⴰ; born January 1958)
is an Algerian politician and academic.
He was an assistant professor at the Houari-Boumediene University of Science and Technology (USTHB). He is the brother and was a special adviser of Abdelaziz Bouteflika
in his former role as President of Algeria
, on whom he would have had "considerable influence",
especially after the president suffered a serious stroke in 2013.
On May 4, 2019, a month after his brother's resignation, in the context of the 2019 protests in Algeria
, he was arrested and provisionally imprisoned in the military prison of Blida
awaiting trial. On September 25, 2019, he was sentenced to fifteen years in prison for “undermining the authority of the army” and “conspiring against the authority of the state”.
Saïd Bouteflika was born in January 1958 in Oujda in Morocco, which was then the base of Wilaya V (the military district in the Oran region), at the start of the rise of his brother Abdelaziz, then aged twenty, with Houari Boumédiène
, who at the same time was the head of the wilaya. He is the youngest of nine siblings.
His father Ahmed
died when he was a year old, so he was brought up by his mother (who ran a hammam
), under the tutelage of his brother Abdelaziz, and thereby by Houari Boumedienne who took power through a coup d'état
in 1965. He was a student at the Saint-Joseph College of the Brothers of Christian Schools, in El-Biar (Algiers
), then at the high school run by the Jesuits, like some sons of leaders,
before the final closure of these establishments.
Exile and return
A graduate of the National Polytechnic School of Algiers,
he arrived in Paris in 1983 to prepare a doctorate in computer science.
His brother, ousted from the estate of Boumédiène, joined him, accused of embezzlement.
Saïd Bouteflika holds a postgraduate doctorate from Pierre-et-Marie-Curie University (Paris VI). His main center of interest is pattern recognition, a field in which he defends his thesis.
In 1987, the Bouteflikas were able to return to Algeria, and Saïd followed his brother back.
He became a teacher and a university union activist. He married a biologist. In El Biar, he lived in a one floor house with his brother.
After his brother Abdelaziz was elected president in 1999, he was appointed special adviser by an unpublished decree; he was officially in charge of the IT Department.
In this role, he removed other members of the cabinet such as Ali Benflis
and Larbi Belkheir
; Saïd Bouteflika fired the former in 2003 and the latter in 2005.
He managed his brother's re-election campaigns in 2004 and 2008, and begins to be presented as a potential successor; he fails to be named vice-president.
In 2005, Abdelaziz Bouteflika was hospitalized in Paris
with an ulcer
, which forced him to step back from his duties. As a result, Saïd's role grew. According to an inhabitant of El Mouradia
interviewed by Jeune Afrique
, “he keeps the agenda of the Head of State, intervenes in the appointments of ministers, diplomats, walis
[lords], heads of public bodies, and influences the internal life of the FLN
. Having become essential to gain access to the president, the special adviser takes de facto management of affairs in El-Mouradia."
In 2008, he helped his brother get re-elected, putting pressure on businessmen to finance the campaign, and made sure that public contracts were entrusted to relatives.
An American cable from that year, released by Wikileaks, shows Bernard Bajolet
indicating that "Corruption, which traces back to the brothers of Bouteflika [Saïd and Abdallah], has reached a new peak and is interfering with economic development".
Shortly afterwards, several corruption scandals broke out, where his name was mentioned, perhaps at the instigation of the Département du Renseignement et de la Sécurité
In 2013, Abdelaziz Bouteflika was hospitalized in Val-de-Grâce, in Paris. For Jeune Afrique, Saïd Bouteflika remains alone at his brother's bedside, filtering access, giving instructions on the management of the crisis to Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal, who must wait 46 days to see the president.
Le Matin even affirms that Saïd Bouteflika himself signed seven decrees of appointment in place of his brother, and that he blocks the other appointments.
At the same time, he intervened in the crisis shaking the FLN in order to impose a relative as secretary general, then in the subsequent cabinet reshuffle.
Journalist and former DRS captain Hichem Aboud
, who revealed the seriousness of the president's condition, accused Saïd Bouteflika of "running the country by proxy", of having "been involved in many corruption cases" and for having persecuted him to silence him.
In October of the same year, rumors of succession between the brothers resumed,
while the movements opposing him, the DRS and its leader, General Toufik
This political war is manifested in particular by a new attack by Hichem Aboud who accused Saïd Bouteflika of massive corruption
and drug trafficking
, but also of homosexuality
, which is illegal in Algeria.
Depleted and almost paralyzed, Abdelaziz Bouteflika finally ran for a fourth term in the Algerian presidential election in 2014 and won in the first round. Shortly after the election, while his brother was still barely visible, rumors of Saïd's desire to succeed him were once again emerging.
In November, one of his relatives,
the businessman Ali Haddad, is the only candidate for the head of the Forum of business leaders.
In September 2015, President Bouteflika put an end to the functions of General Toufik,
a dismissal interpreted by the fact that the reality of power is in the hands of Saïd Bouteflika.
According to journalist Frédéric Pons
, Saïd Bouteflika is preparing the succession of his brother by approaching the moderate Islamists with whom he seeks to give a broad popular base to the new team which will take over the country.
On June 3, 2017, Saïd Bouteflika surprised by coming to support the demonstrators who protest against the treatment given to Rachid Boudjedra by the Ennahar TV
He was booed and excluded from the demonstration.
According to Le Matin d'Algérie
, in the summer of 2017, Saïd Bouteflika was in the best position to succeed his brother in 2019, but such an event would spark an uprising.
The name of former minister Chakib Khelil
is also cited.
Protests and arrest
On March 27, in the context of Hirak
, Saïd Bouteflika, Athmane Tartag, Mohamed Mediène and Louisa Hanoune
met in a military residence to decide whether to dismiss the head of the army, Ahmed Gaïd Salah
, and the maintenance of Bouteflika in exchange for the appointment of a new prime minister responsible for implementing the transition promised in mid-March. After having hesitated on the name of the prime minister, they chose former President Liamine Zéroual
, who declined after accepting, citing health reasons and the refusal of the plan by the demonstrators.
On the evening of 2 April 2019, after the resignation of his brother after being under pressure from the streets and the army, Saïd Bouteflika was reportedly placed
under house arrest.
On May 4, he was arrested along with Athmane Tartag and Mohamed Mediène.
Although forced to wear a prisoner's uniform, Saïd Bouteflika nevertheless had better conditions of detention than other personalities imprisoned at El-Harrach
Prison, who only have the right to read newspapers.
The trial took place on September 23. Saïd Bouteflika was tried along with the other defendants Louisa Hanoune, the secretary general of the Workers' Party
, Mohamed Mediène, the former head of the DRS, and Athmane Tartag, the former coordinator of security services.
During the trial, Saïd Bouteflika rejected the jurisdiction of the military court to try him and refused to answer the judge's questions. He then asked to leave the room and the judge authorized him to do so.
On the second day of the trial, the public prosecutor of the military court of Blida requested a 20-year prison sentence against all the accused.
On the third day, the judge brought down a 15-year prison sentence.
On 26 September 2019, he appealed against the verdict.
The appeal trial of Saïd Bouteflika, Athmane Tartag, Mohamed Mediène and Louisa Hanoune was held in front of the military appeals court of Blida on February 9, 2020.
His 15-year prison sentence was upheld.
Investigation and detention
In December 2020, an Algerian judge ordered placing Bouteflika into pre-trial detention as part of an investigation involving former Algerian Justice Minister, Tayeb Louh. Bouteflika faced charges of attempting to manipulate the national justice system by influencing judges working on cases related to his business connections.
On 3 January 2021, Bouteflika was transferred from the Military Establishment for Prevention and Rehabilitation of Blida to El Harrach Prison.
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- ^ "The lawyers of S. Bouteflika, Hanoune and Generals Tartag and Toufik appeal the judgment - Algeria360 .com". Retrieved September 26, 2019.
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- ^ "Saïd Bouteflika transféré à la prison d'El Harrach". algerie-eco.com (in French). 4 January 2021.
Last edited on 17 March 2021, at 03:47
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