Benin Government

What is the capital of Benin?

Country Name Benin
Full Country Name Republic of Benin
Local - Long Republique du Benin
Local - Short Benin
Former Name Dahomey
Etymology- history of name named for the Bight of Benin, the body of water on which the country lies
Government Type presidential republic
Capital Name Porto-Novo (constitutional capital); Cotonou (seat of government)
Capital - geographic coordinate 6 29 N, 2 37 E
Capital Time Difference UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
Independence 1 August 1960 (from France)
National Holiday Independence Day, 1 August (1960)
Constitution history: previous 1946, 1958 (preindependence); latest adopted by referendum 2 December 1990, promulgated 11 December 1990

amendments: proposed concurrently by the president of the republic (after a decision in the Council of Ministers) and the National Assembly; consideration of drafts or proposals requires at least three-fourths majority vote of the Assembly membership; passage requires approval in a referendum unless approved by at least four-fifths majority vote of the Assembly membership; constitutional articles affecting territorial sovereignty, the republican form of government, and secularity of Benin cannot be amended

Benin Capital City Map

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Benin Government and Politics

Who is the president of Benin?

Executive Branch:

chief of state: President Patrice TALON (since 6 April 2016); note - the president is both chief of state and head of government

head of government: President Patrice TALON (since 6 April 2016); prime minister position abolished

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president

elections/appointments: president directly elected by absolute majority popular vote in 2 rounds if needed for a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); last held on 6 March and 20 March 2016 (next to be held in 2021)

election results: Patrice TALON elected president in second round; percent of vote in first round - Lionel ZINSOU (FCBE) 28.4%, Patrice TALON (independent) 24.8%, Sebastien AJAVON (independent) 23.%, Abdoulaye Bio TCHANE (ABT) 8.8%, Pascal KOUPAKI (NC) 5.9%, other 9.1%; percent of vote in second round - Patrice TALON 65.4%, Lionel ZINSOU 34.6%

Citizenship Criteria:

citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of Benin

dual citizenship recognized: yes

residency requirement for naturalization: 10 years

Legal System:

civil law system modeled largely on the French system and some customary law

Suffrage:

18 years of age; universal

Legislative Branch:

description: unicameral National Assembly or Assemblee Nationale (83 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)

elections: last held on 28 April 2019 (next to be held in April 2023)

election results: percent of vote by party - Union Progressiste 56.2%, Bloc Republicain 43.8%; seats by party - Union Progressiste 47, Bloc Republicain 36; composition - men 77, women 6, percent of women 7.2%

Judicial Branch:

highest court(s): Supreme Court or Cour Supreme (consists of the court president and 3 chamber presidents organized into an administrative division, judicial chamber, and chamber of accounts); Constitutional Court or Cour Constitutionnelle (consists of 7 members including the court president); High Court of Justice (consists of the Constitutional Court members, 6 members appointed by the National Assembly, and the Supreme Court president); note - jurisdiction of the High Court of Justice is limited to cases of high treason by the national president or members of the government while in office

judge selection and term of office: Supreme Court president and judges appointed by the national president upon the advice of the National Assembly; judges appointed for single renewable 5-year terms; Constitutional Court members - 4 appointed by the National Assembly and 3 by the national president; members appointed for single renewable 5-year terms; High Court of Justice "other" members elected by the National Assembly; member tenure NA

subordinate courts: Court of Appeal or Cour d'Appel; district courts; village courts; Assize courts

Regions or States:

12 departments; Alibori, Atacora, Atlantique, Borgou, Collines, Couffo, Donga, Littoral, Mono, Oueme, Plateau, Zou

Political Parties and Leaders:

Alliance for a Triumphant Benin or ABT [Abdoulaye BIO TCHANE]

African Movement for Development and Progress or MADEP [Sefou FAGBOHOUN]

Benin Renaissance or RB [Lehady SOGLO]

Cowrie Force for an Emerging Benin or FCBE [Yayi BONI]

Democratic Renewal Party or PRD [Adrien HOUNGBEDJI]

New Consciousness Rally or NC [Pascal KOUPAKI]

Patriotic Awakening or RP [Janvier YAHOUEDEOU]

Social Democrat Party or PSD [Emmanuel GOLOU]

Sun Alliance or AS [Sacca LAFIA]

Union Makes the Nation or UN [Adrien HOUNGBEDJI] (includes PRD, MADEP)

United Democratic Forces or FDU [Mathurin NAGO]

note: approximately 20 additional minor parties

International Law Organization Participation:

has not submitted an ICJ jurisdiction declaration; accepts ICCt jurisdiction

International Organization Participation:

ACP, AfDB, AU, CD, ECOWAS, Entente, FAO, FZ, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINUSMA, MONUSCO, NAM, OAS (observer), OIC, OIF, OPCW, PCA, UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMIL, UNMISS, UNOCI, UNWTO, UPU, WADB (regional), WAEMU, WCO, WFTU (NGOs), WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO

Diplomatic Representation in the US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Hector POSSET (since 18 January 2017)

chancery: 2124 Kalorama Road NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 232-6656

FAX: [1] (202) 265-1996

Diplomatic Representation from US:

chief of mission: Ambassador Lucy TAMLYN (since 8 November 2015)

embassy: Caporal Bernard Anani, 01 BP 2012, Cotonou

mailing address: 01 B. P. 2012, Cotonou

telephone: [229] 21-30-06-50

FAX: [229] 21-30-03-84

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