Guinea Opposition Threatens New Demonstrations if Electoral “Irregularities” Not Addressed

GUINCHANGEMENT5-10Africaguinee is reporting that Cellou Dalein Diallo, president of the UFDG opposition party, announced today the possibility of new demonstrations if the country’s electoral commission does not correct “irregularities” that suggest what most Guineans have known all along — the government, in collaboration with the CENI, have built in numerous ways to commit fraud in the September 24, 2013, Guinean legislative election.

When the international community intervened in the tug-of-war between the government and the opposition a few months ago regarding legislative elections, it did so by mandating a “false calm” on the opposition by convincing them to cease the massive demonstrations.  Many Guineans in the opposition howled at the idea of an end to the demonstrations and an acceptance by its leaders to go straight to elections. Yet, most observers think that the international community gave the opposition some guarantees for agreeing to go to elections.  Those guarantees, if they do exist, might include an “open season” to return to the streets if irregularities are serious enough and, maybe even a tip of the hat to an opposition boycott of the legislative elections altogether.  But, the duplicitous nature of the international community’s “interest” in Guinea may mean a HUGE double-cross of the opposition before it is over.
On another note, the CENI has just announced that Guineans living abroad will vote on Sunday, September 22.  Allowing Guineans abroad to vote was a major bone of contention  between the government and the opposition with the government suggesting it did not need to include the diaspora in the vote.  The opposition referred the government to the Guinean constitution which provides for such a vote.  When the legislative elections were scheduled for September 24, the opposition was concerned that those in the diaspora would have a very difficult time getting to voting stations on a work day.  The September 22 designation for voting by the diaspora takes care of this issue, but stay tuned to see what the government has up its sleeve with the diaspora voting two days before those in Guinea.

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