Leader of the Algerian ruling National Democratic Rally (RND), Ahmed Ouyahia, has announced resignation as secretary general of the party, APS news agency reported Thursday.
"In fact, Ouyahia has sent to the grassroots a letter in which he expressed his will to step down as a leader of the party, and to remain an activist at the RND," APS quoted the party's spokesman Miloud Chorfi as saying.
Meanwhile, a source within the RND told Xinhua that the resignation of Ouyahia will be officially announced during the national congress of the party slated for Jan. 15.
The RND has been shaken for months by a movement led by former Minister of Health and Sport Yahia Guidoum, which has been claiming the departure of Ouyahia.
In statements to Xinhua, Bachir Medjhed, a political analyst, said that "the resignation of Ouyahia has been expected, as it is part of the wind of change blowing on the political parties in Algeria. The people do not want a leader forever."
"After the stepping down of the leader of two prominent opponent parties, namely the secular Rally for Culture and Democracy (RCD), and the leftist Socialist Forces Front (FFS), now it is the turn on the RND, and later on the other ruling party National Liberation Front (FLN), whose leader Abdelaziz Belkhadem is being contested," the analyst said.
The RCD head Said Sadi and the FFS leader Hocine Ait Ahmed resigned in March and December 2012 respectively.
Medjhed said Ouyahia's resignation is "a bid to broaden his reputation beyond his party, in order to run for the highest office in the country."
Ouyahia, 60, has been the leader of the RND since 1999. He once served as prime minister, but was replaced by Abdelmalek Sellal during the cabinet reshuffle in September 2012.
The RND and the FLN are the two ruling parties in Algeria, as they share the majority in both the parliament and the government. Endi