The socio-political crises in Mali, the Republic of Guinea and Côte d'Ivoire, to which are added serious health and economic crises, threaten, in the short and medium term, Democracy and Stability in our sub-region, in a context of growing insecurity caused by separatist and/or jihadist armed groups.
This situation has demonstrated all the social limitations of our sub-regional institution, ECOWAS, which is steered by our Presidents of the Republic who simultaneously hold the office of Chief Executive, relying on an "Executive Commission" whose members are appointed by themselves, and on a Consultative Parliament whose members are drawn from the National Assembly of each member country.
This structure of the sub-regional institution thus excludes any control by the people over the decisions taken by the Presidents of the Republic during their respective terms of office. This is reflected in the institutional situation that exists in each of these member countries, with the exception of Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau, even if the latter is encouraged by its peers to renounce its parliamentary system in favour of theirs.
In the Republic of Guinea, Alpha Condé, 82 years old, ran for a third term on 3 September 2020, despite a strong popular protest that cost the lives of hundreds of civilians killed during citizen demonstrations suppressed by the Guinean defence and security forces.
This decision of the Guinean President confirms all the suspicions that have expressed his willingness to run for a third term through a constitutional coup d'état that he planned and perpetrated on 22 March 2020 in violation of the constitution and democratic principles in force in the Republic of Guinea.
In doing so, Alpha Condé has not taken into account the growing protest movements of its population which, in its overwhelming majority, rejects his plan for a third term because of the immeasurable risks that this poses to the country and the West African sub-region.
Gathered within the National Front for the Defence of the Constitution (FNDC), Guineans have used all legal channels to fight this project through demonstrations and calls for resistance.
At this very critical phase of the situation in Guinea, marked by the resumption of citizen demonstrations by the FNDC against the third mandate on Tuesday 29 September 2020 in Conakry and the contested candidacy of Alpha Conde in the presidential elections of 18 October, the mobilization of civil society and all democrats is an absolute necessity to preserve democracy, peace and stability in this country. The mobilisation of sub-regional civil society and all democrats is an absolute necessity to preserve democracy, peace and stability in the country. For, the maintenance of Alpha Condé in power beyond his two terms of office is a potential and imminent threat to peace and stability in Guinea and the sub-region.
The Civil Society Organizations and West African Citizen Movements that are signatories of this declaration give their support to the Guinean people, to the FNDC which is at the forefront of this protest movement. They demand the immediate and unconditional release of all illegally detained activists and the conduct of investigations into the killings and violence.
The West African Civil Society Organisations and Citizens' Movements pay a well-deserved tribute to the People of Guinea who have been struggling valiantly for several months for the alternation of power and the respect of democratic principles and the rule of law.
The Civil Society Organizations and West African Citizens' Movements signatories of this declaration strongly condemn the serious human rights violations in Guinea and express their deep indignation and concern over the multiplication of unacceptable speeches by Mr. Alpha Condé who deliberately stirs up ethnic hatred and openly calls for war in his own country.
Civil Society Organizations and West African Citizen Movements call on the President of the Republic of Guinea to submit to the requirements of the rule of law, one of the pillars of which is democratic alternation.
The West African Civil Society Organisations and Citizen Movements call on:
The United Nations to move from the principle of subsidiarity to direct action because the said principle has shown its limits in the context of ECOWAS' management of the crisis in Guinea, thus constituting a brake on the involvement and mobilisation of the international community to avoid chaos in the Republic of Guinea.
The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to work for the dispatch of an international commission of enquiry to the Republic of Guinea to investigate the serious human rights violations recorded during the FNDC demonstrations.
The West African Civil Society Organizations and Citizens' Movements reaffirm their readiness to accompany the People of Guinea in their legitimate struggle for the establishment of a democratic culture in the Republic of Guinea.
Long live the African People's Union!
1- Mouvement Y’en A Marre (Senegal)
2- Balai Citoyen (Burkina Faso)
3- Afrikajom Center (Senegal)
4- Tournons La Page Niger
5- Tournons La Page Côte d’Ivoire
6- Rencontre Africaine de Défense des Droits de l’Homme
7- Ligue Sénégalaise de Défense des Droits de l’Homme
8- Tournons La Page Guinée
10- ONG3D (Senegal)
11- Africans Ricing
12- Collectif des Organisations de la Société Civile pour les Elections - COSCE (Senegal)
13- Front Citoyen Togo Debout
14- Front National pour la Défense de la Constitution - FNDC (Guinea)
15- Groupe de Recherche et d’Appui Conseil pour la Démocratie Participative et la Bonne Gouvernance - GRADEC (Senegal)
16- Mazine NDIAYE (Sénégal)
17- Recherche Action pour le Développement Intégré – RADI (Senegal)
18- Forum Social Sénégalais
19- Le Centre Pour La Démocratie et le Développement - CDD (Nigeria)
Press Contacts :
Aliou SANE Coordinator of the Y'en A Marre Movement (Senegal) +221 77 517 63 05
Ibrahima DIALLO Coordinator of Tournons La Page Guinea +224 622 30 29 30