Guinea Junta Announces ‘Charter’ for Civilian Transition

Guinea military junta that seized power from President Alpha Conde has unveiled a “transitional charter” to steer the country back to civilian rule.

A document read out on national television on Monday, sets down a series of tasks, including the drafting of a new constitution and holding “free, democratic and transparent” elections, although it does not spell out how long the transition will last.

The new charter identifies four institutions or figures that will be in charge of the transition. They are the National Rallying Committee for Development (CNRD) set up by the junta and headed by Doumbaya; the president of the transition, who will also serve as the head of the CNRD, head of state and armed forces chief; a government headed by a civilian prime minister; and a legislative body called the National Transition Council or CNT.

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No member of these institutions will be allowed to take part “in either national or local elections, which will be organised at the end of the transition period”.

The duration of the transition “will be set down by joint agreement among the living forces of the nation” and the CNRD, according to the charter.

Guinean President, Alpha Conde who had been battling a wave of unpopularity by citizens was arrested by Troops led by a special forces colonel, Mamady Doumbouya, on September 5.

The coup is the second to take place in the region, after Mali, in less than 13 months.

Conde became Guinea’s first democratically elected president in 2010 and was re-elected in 2015.

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But last year he pushed through a controversial new constitution that allowed him to run for a third term in October 2020.

The move sparked mass demonstrations in which dozens of protesters were killed. Conde won re-election but the political opposition maintained the poll was a sham.

Guinea’s neighbours in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) are deeply worried by the turbulence in Guinea, one of the poorest and most volatile countries in Africa.

ECOWAS is demanding that elections be held within six months, as well as the release of Conde.

Guinea’s ambassador to the United Nations told the UN General Assembly on Monday that the electoral rolls would be revised and the new constitution would be drafted ahead of new elections.

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