Serdar Berdymuhamedov, the son of Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymuhamedov, has confirmed he will join the race to replace his father in a presidential election set for March 12, Turkmen news website Salamnews reported on February 14, according to RIA Novosti

The incumbent President of Turkmenistan Berdymuhamedov, 64, said at the weekend that he would not seek another term after 15 years at the helm and wanted to allow a younger generation to take over.

Some media reports say his 40-year-old son, who is currently a deputy prime minister, is widely expected to succeed his father as president of Turkmenistan. 

RIA Novosti says that the extraordinary 9th congress of Turkmenistan’s ruling Democratic Party that took place on February 14 nominated Serdar Berdymuhamedov. 

Reuters says Gurbanguly Berdymuhamedov, whose current term had been due to expire in 2024, is also the prime minister of the former Soviet republic and the speaker of the upper house of parliament.  He has reportedly indicated he plans to retain the speaker position.

Turkmenistan will hold an early presidential election on March 12, a Central Election Commission official said after President Gurbanguly Berdymuhamedov hinted he planned to resign.