His government is one of several juntas that seized power in West and Central Africa since 2020, raising concerns among some international powers of a democratic backslide.

Chad is the first to organize elections aimed at ending three years of military rule.

At a high-security event in the capital N'Djamena on Sunday (April 14), Deby said he was someone who kept his promises, as he vowed to strengthen security and improve the economy.

"I believe I have honored my commitments, and that's why many of you have called for me to run. I believe that many of you have called for me to run, because I'm a man of action, because I'm a man who respects these commitments."

Deby seized power in 2021 when his long-ruling father, Idriss Deby, was killed amid clashes with rebels in Chad's north.

A return to civilian rule within 18 months was initially promised - but later pushed back to 2024.

That delay triggered protests that were violently quelled by security forces with around 50 civilians killed.

Over 40% of Chad's population lives below the national poverty line.

The country is also dealing with an influx of refugees fleeing the conflict in neighboring Sudan.

The first round of voting is scheduled to take place on May 6 and a second round on June 22, with provisional results due on July 7.