Guinea Update: Opposition to Take Election Case to ECOWAS Justice Court and The Right to Resist a Repressive Regime

CONDEDONZOSDonzos Celebrate after Attacking Opposition Supporters in a Permitted March  (Seriously, No Kidding)
Next Steps for Opposition
 
As expected, the Guinean opposition is checking closely with its base before deciding on the course to follow after announcement of the “results” by the Supreme Court on Friday evening, Nov. 17.  It looks like they will announce their future plans sometime on Tuesday.
 
The opposition points out firmly that the manner in which the Court didn’t deal election complaints filed concerning fraud or irregularities is unprecedented.  The Court essentially said that it was not “competent” to rule on the complaints because they do not consider such complaints to be under their purview!  With the Supreme Court punting on this issue, the people have no legal recourse in Guinea for dealing with serious election disputes.
 
This is quite a different outcome than in the 2010 presidential election when the Court disqualified votes from five constituencies.  If the Court was competent in 2010, why is it not competent to address disputes in 2013.  Of course there is practical reason for this — it’s Pandora’s box.  If you open the box to deal with even one dispute you are opening yourself to dealing with many more. 
 
 As a result, the opposition intends to seek redress from the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS) Court of Justice to request a total or partial elimination of the legislative election results. 
 
 
The Right to Resist a Repressive Regime
 
Various Guinean websites are reporting that opposition youth are gathered at the axis of Hamdallaye-Bambeto-Cosa, in Conakry.  Both yesterday and today they put up barricades and burned tires along the entrances into their neighborhoods. Today, word spread through the area that an independent journalist was kidnapped by security forces which brought even more people to the streets.
 
What is not being said is that the opposition protesters are not out on the streets by themselves.  As Conde has done all along, he sends into the opposition neighborhoods a full array of police, gendarmes, Malinke militias, FOSSPEL, and Donzos as provocateurs against opposition youth.  Conde also uses foreign mercenaries from Sierra Leone and Liberia (where those who committed much of the 2009 massacre originated), whom you can expect to be on the scene soon, if not already. 
 
An important clarification is required here.  Opposition protests are often described as “violent protests,” or protests which have “turned violent.”  What this leaves out is that these protests have been consistently peaceful.  If violence does occur, it is at the hands of state-sponsored forces and it is not used to curb crime, but to provoke.  After three years of state attacks on peaceful marchers and repeated encroachments into their neighborhoods without cause, in which people were killed, women were raped and homes and businesses were burned, it is only in the last six months that opposition supporters have begun to defend themselves, which is their right. 
A right, no doubt, they will have to exercise as Conde’s next wave of repression sweeps the country to silence the overwhelming majority of Guinean voters who did not vote for him.  
 

 

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Guinea Opposition Leaders Heading to France to Meet with Authorities Concerning the State of the Republic of Guinea

Left to Right:  Lansana Kouyate, Sidya Toure and Cellou Dalein Diallo

The leaders of the Guinean opposition, including Diallo, Sidya Toure and Lansana Kouyate are expected in the French capital tomorrow to meet with the highest authorities. According to our information, the main objective of this movement is to explain the ins and outs of the paralysis of our country and the need to get out of the crisis in Guinea in which it has been for some time. And, most importantly, to help stop serious inter-ethnic clashes currently underway in various parts of the suburbs of Conakry.  

 
During their stay in France, from 26 to 30 May, opponents of President Alpha Condé will explain their new strategy to the media through a press conference next Tuesday, May 28 17H 00 at 18:30 at the National Assembly.  At the last minute, it was announced that the former Prime Minister and President of the Faculty, Sidya Toure, who lost his sister, will not be able to make the trip to Paris.

The Kumbaya from Hell: At Last Minute, Conde Adds a Boatload of Political Leaders to Meeting

According to an announcement read on state TV and radio, Conde has extended the initial invitation he made to Cellou Dalein Diallo, Sidya Toure, and Moussa Solano, to several other leaders of Guinean political parties.

Below is the official statement translated into English using Google. You will see many familiar names, Jean Marie Dore, Ibrahima Fofana Kassory, and Lonseny Fall. Most of this list consists of parties who garnered less than one percent of the vote in the presidential election in 2010 and most of the leaders have already declared allegiance to Alpha Conde. Conde pulled off a classic bait and switch.

This is not a meeting, this is a photo-op. Yet, this works just fine for Western diplomats. They will share the photo of all the Guinean leaders gathered under the tent of Alpha Conde, with their corporate contacts as proof that Guinea is ready. Grossly fraudulent legislative elections to seal the deal on Guinea’s transition to destruction cannot be too far away.

A kumbayah straight from hell, indeed.

THE PRESS OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENCY

As part of periodic consultations with the social and political actors, the Head of State, Professor Alpha Condé, will receive Tuesday, November 15th at 3:00 p.m. at the Palais Sékhoutouréya, leaders of the Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea, UFDG , Elhadj Mamadou Diallo, the Union of Republican Forces, UFR, Mr Sidi Touré, the Party of Unity and Progress, PUP, Elhadj Moussa Solano.

This invitation is extended to leaders of the Union for Progress of Guinea, UPG, Jean Marie Dore, Guinea for All, GPT, Mr. Ibrahima Fofana Kassory, of the Democratic Union of Guinea, UDG, Elhadj Mamadou Sylla , the United Front for Democracy and Change, FUDEC, François Lonsény Fall, New Generation for the Republic, NGR, Mr. Abe Sylla, the Party for Union and Development, PUD, Elhadj Mamadou Ditinn Diallo, Union of Democratic Forces, UDF, Mr. Mamadou Bah Baadiko.

The invitation of the President of the Republic also falls within the National Dialogue, everything dear to the people of Guinea.

The Press Office of the Presidency informs the national and international press as part of periodic consultations with the social and political actors, the Head of State, Professor Alpha Condé, will receive Tuesday, November 15 at 3:00 p.m. at the Palais Sékhoutouréya the leaders of the Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea, UFDG, Elhadj Mamadou Diallo, the Union of Republican Forces, UFR, Mr Sidi Touré, the Party of Unity and Progress, PUP, Elhadj Moussa Solano .

The press will gather out of traditional statements of political leaders invited audience.

To this end, the Press Office of the President invites interested bodies, by reason of a journalist by organ, to be present at Sékhoutouréya Tuesday, November 15 to 14 hours.

Please bring an identification badge.

Conakry, November 14, 2011

Guineans in New York Push for Justice in Homeland

September 13, 2011, 11:30 am

Guineans in New York Push for Justice in Homeland

By KIRK SEMPLE
Mamadou Maladho Diallo, a community organizer and journalist, goes through signs used for recurring demonstrations for human rights in Guinea, at the Pottal Fii Bhantal Fouta Djallon office.Todd Heisler/The New York TimesMamadou Maladho Diallo, a community organizer and journalist, goes through signs used for recurring demonstrations for human rights in Guinea, at the Pottal Fii Bhantal Fouta Djallon office.

Tucked behind a Bronx mosque is the headquarters of an advocacy group for immigrants from Guinea, the West African homeland of the hotel housekeeper who accused the French politician Dominique Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault in May. In a corner of the office sit stacks of hand-lettered placards that were made for a rally to protest violence against Guinean women.

“We don’t ask for revenge,” explained Mamadou Maladho Diallo, a staff member of the organization. “We ask for justice.”

But Mr. Diallo was not talking about Mr. Strauss-Kahn.

Well before that case made headlines across the world, Guineans in New York City suffered another trauma that has also weighed heavily on their small diaspora. Nearly two years ago, security forces in Guinea went on a rampage at an opposition rally in the country’s capital, raping and killing scores of protesters.

Most of the victims were from the Fulani ethnic group, Guinea’s largest. Since then, Fulanis have been calling — so far, without success — for the arrest and prosecution of the attackers. A group of Fulanis in the New York region are now organizing a nationwide campaign in the United States to draw attention to their quest for justice.

The campaign is scheduled to begin on Thursday with a news conference at the Adam Clayton Powell State Office Building in Harlem. A rally in front of the United Nations is planned for Sept. 28. Continue reading “Guineans in New York Push for Justice in Homeland”

Conde Tries to Cover Premeditated Shooting of Diallo Supporters by Convictions in Guinea’s Kangaroo Courts

(AFP) – 2 hours ago

CONAKRY — Guinea courts jailed seven supporters of main opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo for one year for taking part in a rally to welcome him home after a three-month trip, lawyers said Wednesday.

The government banned the April 3 rally and the thousands of people who took part were dispersed by security forces: hospital sources said one person was killed and 27 wounded but the opposition says four died.

Sixty members of Diallo’s Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea (UFDG) were arrested and charged with taking part in an illegal demonstration, lawyers said.

A court in the capital Conakry sentenced seven of them to one year in prison, their lawyer Boubacar Barry told AFP.

Seventeen others were given six-month suspended sentences and fined one million Guinean francs (100 euros) and 17 more freed.

Another court in the city sentenced 10 more party activists to one-year suspended jail terms and 100-euro fines, said lawyer Thierno Ousmane Tall. Nine others were freed.

Diallo, a former prime minister, lost November presidential elections to President Alpha Conde after a campaign in which around seven people were killed in largely ethnic clashes.

After the vote he left the country on a three-month tour of Africa and Europe.

The government has denied its forces opened fire on his welcome home rally.

The election in the world’s leading producer of bauxite was billed as the first democratic vote since independence from France in 1958, turning the page on 50 years of dictatorship.

Alpha Conde Makes Move to “Neutralize” His Opposition

Guinean President warns trouble makers

Conakry, Guinea – Guinean head of state, Alpha Conde, Saturday warned -trouble makers and those who create disorder- they will henceforth be prosecuted. Speaking with labour unionists, President Conde said -the mess will no longer be tolerated,- adding that he would provide the police and the gendarmerie with “necessary deterrent” means to maintain law and order throughout the nation. About 66 supporters of the Union of Democratic Forces of Guinea (UFDG), led by Cellou Dalein Diallo, Conde’s main rival during last November elections, who were recently arrested, will Monday appear in court and may, according to a judicial source, serve between two to five  years in prison. On taking office last December, Conde ordered the removal of heavy equipment of the army towards the interior of the country, saying the Guinean Army’s responsibility is to ensure security at the borders, not to maintain order in the city, where several soldiers were accused of participating in the bloody suppression of demonstrators, agitating for democracy in September 2009.

-There will no more be another ’28 September’ in Guinea during my presidency. A national commission on human rights will soon be set up but this will not prevent the law from being enforced with its full weight. The presidential election is over, the time has come to work and not create disorder to discredit my government,- he said.

Welcoming the initiative of the unionists, he urged his -comrades- in the fight for the birth of a rule of law and democracy to help fight corruption, -which has spread its tentacles- in all parts of the country, leading to -a total disruption- that must be eradicated quickly.

Conde warned that even presidential candidates at the last polls would be prosecuted if found guilty of -mismanagement- by a probe panel instituted by the new regime.

-Help me to promote competent, honest and fair managers. I do not know them, because none of them trusted me during my long struggle in opposition, during which I never ceased to condemn the diversion of public funds and the promotion of executives by nepotism,- he said.

He said -we can criticize the first president, Ahmed Sekou Toure (1958-1984) for many things but surely not for embezzlement and looting of national wealth, which he left intact, as well as several plants processing local products.-

Pana 11/04/2011

Cellou Diallo Calls for Nationwide Civil Disobedience Against Conde Regime

It was widely rumored that Alpha Conde, prior to Diallo’s arrival in Conakry, had ordered Guinean security forces to fire upon Diallo supporters gathered at the airport to welcome him.  It appears the order was carried out — one dead, 27 seriously wounded.
By TAMBA JEAN-MATTHEW  (email the author)
Posted Sunday, April 10 2011 at 13:10

The runner-up in last year’s Guinean presidential elections is threatening a nationwide civil disobedience campaign if 67 members of his party are not released from detention by the newly elected government of President Alpha Condé.

Cellou Dalein Diallo warned that the opposition in Guinea will not allow the government of President Alpha Condé “to trample on the rights of citizens” as the military dictatorship did in the past.

“There is a conspicuous threat to our civil liberties that we have attained through long years of struggle and hard sacrifice…and this is inadmissible,” Diallo warned.

The opposition leader made the statements during a press conference in Conakry on Friday following his return home at the end of a three-month visit abroad.

During a welcome march by his supporters in the capital Conakry, there was a confrontation with the police that left one person dead and 27 others seriously injured.

President Condé’s government accused Diallo’s supporters of creating “unnecessary tension” and denied reports of any death or injuries which were later confirmed by independent sources.

‘Institutionalising ethnic hate’

Diallo said Guinea was at the brink of returning to a lawless state both from his personal assessment and a situation report addressed to him by his party headquarters.

He accused the government of President Condé of “institutionalising the ethnic divide, hatred, discrimination and lawlessness” in the country.