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Reporter Saliou Samb, of Reuters Africa, on the Konate, Dore, Conde Payroll?

September 27, 2010

Early on in Guinea’s electoral process, Saliou Samb, became the reporter of omission.  Samb has consistently not reported the duplicitous twists and turns which the transition government and Conde’s campaign have thrown in the way to block the advancement of democracy in Guinea.

Of particular note is Samb’s refusal to investigate and report the serious legal issues associated with the “coup” of the CENI by the Konate-Dore-Conde agent, Lounseny Camara.  A well-respected Guinean attorney, Hassatou Balde, has fully dissected the CENI “takeover” and concludes that egregious violations of electoral law were made by Camara and his transition or more accurately, “non-transition,” backers to seize the charimanship of the CENI.  Attorney Balde’s analysis can be found, in French, at http://www.guineepresse.info/index.php?id=14,6403,0,0,1,0  When an English version becomes available, Guinea Oye! will post it.

If we rely on Samb to report on  these and other critical issues associated with the electoral campaign raised increasingly by all sectors, a fraudulent election will triumph in Guinea. 

Guinea Oye! posts Samb’s latest article below as a caution to the reader that Samb cares little for objective reporting  and that his focus is decidely subjective.  How does Samb sleep at night?  Getting paid must be the sedative.

Guinea election date in doubt: main parties
Mon Sep 27, 2010 1:15pm GMT

By Saliou Samb

CONAKRY (Reuters) – A dispute over alleged bias in Guinea’s election body means the West African country could miss an October 10 target date for the decisive second round of its presidential vote, political parties said on Monday.

A fresh delay over an election originally slated for last month would be the biggest blow yet to internationally-backed efforts to restore civilian rule to a country which is key to regional security and is a major minerals producer.

“The October 10 date is at risk because of the CENI (election commission) situation,” Mamadou Bah Baddiko, spokesman for the party of presidential candidate Celou Dalien Diallo, said.

“We had a number of discussions at the weekend but in our view we have reached a political and legal impasse,” he added.

Diallo’s camp had been pressing for an early election. But last week it accused Lounceny Camara, newly appointed head of the CENI, of supporting presidential rival Alpha Conde and said it could not accept an election organised by him.

“At this rate, we are set to delay the date to October 17 at best — in fact we could even be looking at October 24,” said an official of Conde’s RPG party who declined to be named.

A third official involved in planning meetings for the election said October 10 also appeared to be ruled out because so far only 3.5 million out of the total five million voting slips required had been delivered.

The dispute has prevented junta leader Sekouba Konate from formally approving October 10 as the run-off date despite growing concerns that a further delay could lead to a repeat of street clashes last month between rival factions.

“I am at my wits’ end,” Konate, who has won international plaudits for his readiness to hand over power, told French RFI radio according to a transcript on its website.

“If they give me a date tomorrow, I’ll sign. I don’t want to get involved in this but we have to find a compromise.”

The vote is intended to end a political crisis that began in December 2008 when soldiers took charge of the country in a rapid military coup, filling a power vacuum that opened when longstanding President Lansana Conte died.

Diallo polled 43.69 percent in June’s first round of voting, with Conde well behind on 18.25 percent. Conde’s party said his real share of the vote was much higher but suffered because of fraud and other irregularities.

Last week U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s special representative for West Africa warned that Guinea ran the risk of another army takeover were the final voting round to be further delayed.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Alioune permalink
    February 21, 2012 7:03 AM

    If you know Saliou Samb, you can’t write your article. This journalist is the best in Guinea.

    • February 21, 2012 7:45 PM

      Thank you for your comment. I have received two other complaints about this post. I don’t know Saliou Samb, but unlike a singer or news anchor, being a journalist is faceless and you are and you should be judged on your writing. I think Mr. Samb has given an inordinate amount of “passes” to Alpha Conde over the last two years. Also, he omits vital information that is critical for context. I have written several posts to fill the blanks left by Mr. Samb.

      I have no doubt that Mr. Samb has been brave through years of Guinean gov’t. abuse against journalists. Please note that Mr. Samb’s employer, Reuters, is one of the few Engish language media covering Guinea. What Mr. Samb writes is often repeated, but he must provide more information and deal straight on about the people’s concern about Alpha Conde’s leadership. Most of the people reading his articles are from the US and I’m sure you know that Americans are not very familiar with Guinea or Africa for that matter.

      I would like to see Mr. Samb succeed in educating his English-speaking audience and “tell it like it is.” Something is holding him back. I look forward to more politically informative and comprehensive coverage from him.

      I commend you and the two other people for supporting Mr. Samb. I’m sure he is a fine man.

      Best of luck in your endeavors

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