Guinea: Is the motto “Yes We Can” excluded for Africans… ?

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For those interested in analysing and decrypting the world political system and mechanism, the death of the Guinean President, Lansana Conte, last week was the opportunity to come to a better understanding of the real plague that still and always affects the old continent. The military coup that followed the president’s death was a wonderful demonstration of the African ability and skill for consensus. Unlike in many other regions in Africa, in this part of West Africa, the different empires such as the Empire of Ghana, the one of Songhai or Mali, had long before the arrival of the Europeans established, between the different ethnic groups and tribes in the region, precedents for the living together in peaceful harmony; hence as well the general consensus today after the death of Lansana Conte and the absence of profound division on the grounds of ethnicity among the Guinean people.

Moreover, the hardship experienced by the Guineans during the 24 years of late President Lasana Conte’s dictatorship has put everyone on the same side; the one of change. For the last two decades, the disastrous economic management, despite the country’s enormous reserves in bauxite, diamonds, iron, nickel and uranium deposits, has made Guinea more known for its poverty than for its mining sector exploited by private foreign companies. Poverty and the need for redistribution of the wealth of the nation also partly explain the general political consensus for change today. So welcome by the people is the coup that it has become difficult to call it a coup. What looks more like the birth of a new revolution full of hope was according to Le Parsien newspaper received as a political victory by a mob cheering the new leader and calling him by his new nickname “Obama junior”. The leader of the coup, Capt Moussa Dadis Camara, made it clear his only will is to reorganise the country before giving back the power to the people through free democratic presidential elections in 2010. He already managed and succeeded in getting the support of the government and Prime minister. If the latter already refers to him as Mr the President, it however, seems that some are more than worried by the new situation in Guinea. President Camara has indeed warned: « We have blocked the mining sector, »… « There will be a renegotiation of contracts. »… “…any contracts found to be ‘defective’” will be revised” which sounds as bad news for those who had been benefiting from the misery of the country during the last two decades; with France at the forefront.

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Unlike the true Obama the one presented by his people as Obama junior is far from being accepted and recognised by the same European nations that recognise the wealth and corruption accounting for the poverty of the people and the wealth of the elites in Guinea. In trying to urge the new President of Guinea to hold presidential elections immediately France through the voice of President Nicolas Sarkozy displays nothing else but another aspect of the hypocrisy contained within the French Obamania. Is the motto “Yes We Can” excluded for Africans who dream of stamping out corruption and achieving real independence? Here is the real question …

By Dr Moustafa Traore

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