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Maintaining peace in Guinea

Jun 4, 2012, 12:30 PM

The political turmoil in Guinea Bissau following April’s military coup reportedly led by General Antonio Indaj is really a cause for concern not only for the people of Guinea Bisaau, but Africa as a whole and the world at large.

The Bissau-Guinean military and, of course, all Bissau-Guinean politicians must go back to the negotiation table, and put their country first before self.

It is important to note that any unrest in Bissau could have severe consequences for the entire West African sub-region.

Therefore, we urge the sub-regional leaders and ECOWAS, as well as the AU, to put more pressure on the Guinea Bissau military to give the democratic process a chance.

The population of that country, more so the military, should realize that coups and counter coups as continues to happen in their country, cannot bring them any good other than take them backward.

As we have consistently indicated in this column, coup d’etat is a treasonable offence, and an unacceptable means of changing a government.

No matter how unpopular, despotic, inept, corrupt, wanting in vision a government or a leader may be, resorting to the barrel of a gun to overturn that system is undemocratic and unacceptable.

We are of the firm conviction that those who have staged a coup or planning to stage one must be made to understand that the wish of the people is supreme, and should always be allowed to assert itself.

Bissau-Guineans should allow the democratic process to take its right course.

Now that the military is in control, it should exercise a high sense of discipline, and avoid the unnecessary violence, arrest and intimidation of politicians.

After all, Guinea Bissau belongs to all Bissau-Guineans, and any violence that might erupt could leave a lasting negative effect on the country’s development process.

We urge the people of Guinea Bissau, especially the military, to allow peace to prevail in the interest of all.

Coups and counter coups would only create instability and retard the country’s march towards democracy and progress.

The military must bear in mind that no matter what, the interest of Bissau-Guinea as a nation supersedes their interest as a group.

They must also be prepared to ensure that Guinea Bissau must remain as a nation.

Meanwhile, our commendation goes to all those individuals and groups, notably ECOWAS and the European Union, who have been making efforts to ensure peace is maintained in Guinea Bissau, and we urge them to continue the good work.

 

“Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defences of peace must be constructed”.

Anonymous

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