No African region has experienced more military interventions in the Political Spheres of their countries than the West Africa. Almost all West African countries have experienced a coup in recent memory.
Just last year, Mali experienced a military coup that saw the ousting of the President and his entire government. Niger nearly had a military coup. Burkina Faso has had a military coup. Ghana has had a military coup in the past. Nigeria has had military coups in the past. Ivory Coast has also experienced military instability in it’s political sphere.
Social Media speculation has been rife that the former colonial master France has always had a hand in the military coups that have been experienced in this region, in order for her to maintain her interest in the mineral welfare of these countries. However, it is worthy noting that no overwhelming evidence has been give to substantiate these claims.
Constitutional Provisions are a vital cog of the development and flourishing of democracy. Democratic tenets demand that those bestowed with the instruments of power judiciously keep them and provide an enabling environment for democracy to flourish. Failure to do so, usually results in Political unrest. The respect for the rule of law and the constitution as the Supreme Law of the land is a sure way of ensuring Political Stability.
In the case of Guinea and the events of Sunday 5th September, 2021 are going to be stitched into the minds of the Youth of Guinea and other African countries. President Alpha Conde of Guinea came to power in December 2010 with proper constitutional provisions of term limits already in place. He made constitutional amendments that allowed him to stand for third term and in the last election held last year, Conde declared himself winner with 59.5% of the votes cast. News of the disgruntled public and the ultimate decision to overthrow him by the military is as results of the reforms that Conde ordered the Parliament to make. Chief among the reforms is that of Hiking his salary and those of the Cabinet and Members of Parliament while ordering the reduction in salaries of some of the military officials. This is said to have infuriated the military officials coupled with the raising Poverty levels in the country, poor management of the national resources.
Alpha Conde failed to respect the constitutional provisions that allowed him to take the reigns of power. Whether it is greedy or desire for self aggrandisement that made him change the constitution is yet to be fully understand. However, it is worthy pointing out that a leader who has delivered to the people, would always want to respect the provisions that allowed him to take the reigns of power.
The soldiers in a coordinated move led by Lt Col Mamady Doumbouya had enough of the overtures of President Alpha Conde. He was captured and the military junta took over the country and declaring a state of emergency in Guinea Conakry. Lt Col Mamady Doumbouya is the head of the Guinea Conakry Army special forces having been brought to Guinea Conakry by President Alpha Conde to head that Unit. He is a trained commando. He is now seen as the hope of the People of Guinea Conakry in the current circumstances.
The events in Guinea Conakry are a stark contrast to what just transpired in Zambia in Southern African where the incumbent graciously accepted defeat in the elections to then Opposition leader and allowed for smooth transition of power.
African and World leaders should learn to respect the constitutional provisions and the will of the people. Only then will we see an end to the undemocratic ousting of Political Leaders by Military Personnel.