Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Guinea Bissau: ECOWAS forces newly appointed PM to resign

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Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi is an experienced and award winning journalist from Ghana. He has worked for several media brands both in Ghana and on the International scene. Isaac Kaledzi is currently serving as an African Correspondent for DW.
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The West African regional bloc ECOWAS has forced Guinea-Bissau’s newly appointed Prime Minister Faustino Fudut Imbali to resign.

ECOWAS had given Guinea-Bissau an ultimatum to reverse the sacking of the country’s previous prime minister, Aristides Gomes.

President Jose Mario Vaz named Imbali prime minister last week after sacking his entire cabinet but the sacked prime minister Aristides Gomes refused to step down.

Gomes’ decision triggered a political crisis compounding the tension in the country ahead of a presidential election.

President Vaz justified the sacking of the government saying it was as a result of a “serious political crisis” in the country.

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In a radio announcement, the president was reported to have said he considers the crisis serious which had “prevented the normal operation of some institutions”.

But regional bloc ECOWAS condemned the move, calling it illegal, and held an extraordinary summit in Niamey on Friday.

That forced Imbali’s government to resign after threats were issued to sanction Guinea Bissau.

Crucial elections due

Elections are due in Guinea Bissau this month and the latest move cast doubts over that process.

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Last month a protester was killed and several others injured during a demonstration calling for a delay to the November 24 election.

Opposition parties want the election delayed to allow for the cleaning up of the voters register.

The President will contest the November 24 election however as an independent candidate and will be challenged by 11 other candidates.

Mr Vaz, 62, has been in office since 2014 after he a tight presidential contest that he won in a run-off.

His five-year mandate ended on 23 June but the president is staying on temporarily under a mediation plan forged by the 15-nation regional bloc ECOWAS.


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