The hope of detained former President, Alpha Conde of Guinea being sent to exile was on Saturday, dashed after the country’s ruling junta ruled out such plan.
The junta rather said reverting to civilian rule would be done in accordance with the will of the people.
This was contained in a statement from the ruling council in defiance of international pressure for Conde’s release and a six-month timetable for elections after a coup on September 5 sparked global condemnation.
Recall that on Friday, an ECOWAS delegation led by two heads of state visited Guinea.
According to a press briefing by a junta spokesman, Colonel Amara Camara at the ruling council’s first press conference on the six-month deadline, Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who led the coup that ousted Conde, told the ECOWAS delegation that “it was important for ECOWAS to listen to the legitimate aspirations of the people of Guinea.”
Doumbouya stressed the need not to repeat the “mistakes of the past”, recalling that national consultations to outline the transition had begun on Tuesday and that “only the sovereign people of Guinea will decide its destiny”, Camara said.
“It is also clear to all parties that the former president will remain in Guinea,” he added.
During their visit, the Ghanaian head of state Nana Akufo-Addo, whose country holds the rotating presidency of ECOWAS, and his Ivorian counterpart Alassane Ouattara, presented the junta with the organisation’s demands for elections within six months.
They also insisted on the release of Conde.
“We had very frank, fraternal talks with Colonel Doumbouya and his associates and collaborators and I think that ECOWAS and Guinea will find a way to walk together,” Akufo-Addo said at the end of the visit.
The ruling council, which now designates Doumbouya as “President of the Republic and Head of State”, said that the consultation sessions scheduled for Friday with banks, insurance companies and unions would be held on Saturday.
This consultation will continue next week, it announced, including Monday meetings with cultural actors, press associations and those within the informal sector.
The military has already held talks with political parties, religious leaders, the heads of mining companies, key players in this poor but resource-rich country, and other figures.
Categories: FOREIGN NEWS