#Article (Archive)

Guinea Conakry again

Nov 19, 2013, 4:16 PM

It was not long ago when we wrote on this page urging Guineans to maintain peace before and after the result of the country’s parliamentary election was announced.

We argued that Guineans, especially the ruling and opposition parties - whether the loser or the winner - should have the bold mind to accept with grace the outcome of the election.

We urged the loser to realise that there will be another chance. And the eventual winner, we said, should reach out to the loser in the spirit of reconciliation and goodwill so as to move the country forward.

But the news coming from Guinea yet again is indeed disturbing.

Reuters has reported that one person was killed and nine others injured during clashes in Guinea’s capital after a journalist critical of President Alpha Conde said he had been targeted for assassination.

The violence highlighted simmering tensions in the West African nation, days after the Supreme Court rejected opposition challenges to the ruling party’s victory in a September 28 parliamentary election.

The government said security forces intervened on Sunday after youths set up checkpoints and attacked cars in the coastal capital, Conakry.

Four of those injured were members of the security forces, said a government statement issued on Monday.

The political disturbances that gripped Guinea Conakry before this latest development are still fresh in our minds. About 50 people were killed in political violence before the poll, which was aimed as completing Guinea’s move back to democracy, following a 2008 coup.

It is however clear that Guinea Conakry is apparently not yet back on track. For a country whose political history has been marked by tragedies and much turbulence, the people of Guinea Conakry seem not to have learned their lessons in dealing with the issues confronting them.

One important thing that Guineans should consider is that the responsibility for the country’s progress must be borne by its citizens.

No one else is going to step in and solve the problems of Guineans; Guineans must help themselves and stand firm to solve their problems.

What Guinea needs is peace and stability, which can only be ensured by good governance.

Guineans, like all Africans, have to begin by having confidence in themselves, which they have admirably demonstrated over the years.

‘‘Politicians also have no leisure, because they are always aiming at something beyond political life itself, power and glory, or happiness.’’