There is strong evidence that political parties help stabilize dictatorships – they can be used to co-opt opposition groups and reward political elites. The danger to hegemonic party dictatorships comes when splits and defections emerge in the dominant party. In January, three major political actors left Compaoré’s party. The first is Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, a former president of the National Assembly and a longtime ally of Compaoré. The second is Simon Compaoré, the former mayor of Ouagadougou, the capital city. The third is a former cabinet minister, Salif Diallo.
These defections are significant because, rather than leaving the ruling party and each forming their own, they teamed up to form the Mouvement du peuple pour le progrès (MPP).