Republic of Guinea's President Alpha Condé. Picture: Reuters
Republic of Guinea's President Alpha Condé. Picture: Reuters

SA calls for Alpha Condé’s immediate release amid coup d’état in Guinea

By Jonisayi Maromo Time of article published Sep 6, 2021

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THE South African government has said it has noted with great concern the political and security situation in the Republic of Guinea, following the apparent coup d’état.

“We call for the immediate release of Profesor Alpha Condé, President of the Republic of Guinea, unharmed and the African Union to actively intervene to ensure a speedy return to stability,” said Clayson Monyela, spokesperson for the Department of International Relations and Co-operation (Dirco).

“The South African government further calls on the soldiers/military to exercise total restraint and refrain from political interference. In addition, South Africa urges all political actors and civil society to engage in meaningful dialogue in order to resolve the current political challenges facing the country.”

It emerged over the weekend that soldiers in Guinea had detained the 83-year-old Condé, and placed him under house arrest on Sunday.

The military has taken to state television to announce that Condé’s government has been dissolved, in what is clearly a military coup currently underway in the West African country, according to reports.

According to local and international media, the announcement in the West African country came after hours of heavy gunfire erupted near the presidential palace, around Sékoutoureya, the presidential palace where the head of state is located.

The Guinean government denies reports that a military coup d’état is underway.

According to a statement which has been widely circulated on social media, Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, the commander of the country special forces said, “We decided, after seeing the President, who is with us, to dissolve the current constitution, dissolve the government and close the land and air borders.”

Anadolu Agency reported that Doumbouya, who is the head of the Special Forces Group (GPS), justified this political turnaround by "the dysfunction of republican institutions", "the instrumentalisation of justice ”and“ the trampling of citizens' rights,” the news outlet reported.

“The personalisation of political life is over. We will no longer entrust politics to one man, we will entrust it to the people, Doumbouya was quoted as saying by news broadcaster Al Jazeera.

Conde was sworn in for a third term in December 2020 following violent elections whose result the opposition rejected.

The president pushed through constitutional changes in March of 2020 allowing him to run despite a two-term limit.

Condé has been president of Guinea since December 2010. He was re-elected twice in 2015 and 2020.

He also chaired the African Union from January 2017 to January 2018.

African News Agency (ANA)

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