A first group of dozens of opponents of ousted Guinean President Alpha Condé, detained in the Conakry Civil Prison, was released yesterday, Tuesday, September 7, early in the evening. Among them: Abdoulaye Bah (UFDG), Étienne Soropogui (common values), Ismaël Condé (Deputy Mayor of Matam), Kéamou Bogolan Haba (spokesman for Anad, an alliance of about fifty political parties that support the opponent Cellou Dalein Diallo), or Fonik Mengué, himself released from the hospital.
After the missed meeting on Monday, Tuesday was good, says our correspondent in Conakry, Mouctar BahEarly in the evening, Abdoulaye Bah from the UFDG and his companions accidentally pass one by one through the gate of the Conakry Civil Prison. “We are free today. Freedom is invaluable, it is a new birth when you leave prison. It is a joy to be among their own. I think it’s a test in my life and therefore I have no hatred for anyone, says Abdoulaye Bah to RFI.
Bogolan Keamou Haba is a spokesman for the National Alliance for Alternation and Democracy (Anad), an organization of some fifty political parties, civil society and non-governmental organizations that supports the First First and the leader of the main opposition party to the regime of the former president of Alpha Condé. He’s one of the first prisoners to be released last night. He in turn understands:
I’m the last prisoner, arrested on July 14, by Alpha Condé […] The people of Guinea demanded that the third term be reversible and obviously the third term has become reversible, that is the victory we have won together. Now that Alpha Condé is gone, we must quickly open the dialogue. And we ask everyone to agree to unite, because we must serve the nation.
Ismaël Condé, imprisoned by the deposed regime, congratulates the new authorities on asking Guinea to dream. “We hope that the military authorities came up with good intentions, we want to believe them in these good intentions, that this departure will finally be a new era for Guinea. At least this is a crossroads that we tend to not yet miss a date for history.” “We dare to believe in them, we dare to believe in Guinea and finally believe in a free, democratic and prosperous Guinea,” he concludes.
The Iman from Wanidara, El-hadj Abdoulaye Baldé, imprisoned since October 2020, expresses wishes and prayers for the success of the new authorities: “We are very pleased with the Guinean army, we are very pleased with Colonel Mamady Doumbouya and his team, we pray to God that he will show them the right way. “
The acclaimed Foniké Mengué All this took place under the supervision of Colonel Balla Samoura and Moussa Tiegboro Camara, both members of the new junta.
Foniké Mengué, a figure from the National Front for Defense of the Constitution (FNDC), has also been free since Tuesday night, after sitting behind bars for a year. The activist’s release caused explosions of joy on the capital’s streets.
Unlike the other political prisoners, it was from the Ignace Deen Hospital, where he had been hospitalized for a month, that Oumar Sylla, alias Foniké Mengué, regained his freedom early in the evening. Supporters of the national front for the defense of the constitution cheer for their hero before rushing into a vehicle. Through the sunroof, the activist greets a crowd flowing with joy that continues to accumulate around the 4×4 stuck in an endless procession of motorcycles.
It will take two hours to reach Bambéto’s crossroads, a symbolic site of the protest against ousted President Alpha Condé. Behind his famous dark glasses, the Guinean flag on his shoulders, Foniké Mengué speaks to his followers, gathered by thousands: “Our fight against the third term has been successful! All this time I was in prison, I never doubted our victory. It is true that imprisonment is difficult. But I remained myself, for you, the people of Guinea, you have not abandoned me. This victory is our victory: let us be proud of it! “
The FNDC activist calls for a peaceful march to pay tribute to the martyrs next Saturday, in cooperation with the opposition parties. While it specifies that it supports the transition process together with the CNRD putschists.
Lawyers for the detainees said on Tuesday that a list of 79 releases had been approved after consultation between them, the new authorities and the prison administration, and further releases are now expected. It really was a first wave of liberation.
[…] We are happy together: our goal has been achieved.
Maître Salifou Béavogui, lawyer for political prisoners
ECOWAS meeting on Wednesday: sanctions will fall
On Sunday, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) condemned the military takeover and the arrest of President Alpha Condé. In its press release, the sub-regional organization demanded that the sanctions be returned to constitutional order in Guinea. The country will therefore not escape it: it should first be temporarily suspended from all ECOWAS bodies. On May 30, Mali received the same punishment after a second military coup in nine months.
“It is the degree of sanctions” that will be discussed on Wednesday, assures a minister in the region. How big and of what character will they be? We recall that by 2020, Mali had mainly been subject to economic sanctions until the military began a transition of no more than 18 months.
During this extraordinary summit, West African leaders may also appoint a special envoy or mediator responsible for contacting the Putschists. “In general, we see among the previously available presidents,” said the same minister. Among the names circulating for the post, that of Ernest Bai Koroma, the former Sierra Leonean president.
Once the decisions have been announced, the African Union should follow in ECOWAS ‘footsteps and announce sanctions against the country. The AU can also shut down Guinea from its organs, as it had done for Mali in the beginning. June.