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Doctor of Philosophy, Amadou Sadjo Barry is a professor and researcher in the ethics of international relations. Author of a Essay on the political foundation of Guinea (ed. L’Harmattan, March 2021), the Guinean intellectual returns, in an interview with World Africa, on the causes of the resurgence of putsch in West Africa. Double military coup in Mali in August 2020 and May 2021, “institutional coup” in Chad in April and, finally, putsch in Guinea on September 5: for Amadou Sadjo Barry, this sequence highlights the weakness of political models and institutional of these so-called republican states but incapable of guaranteeing a peaceful transfer of power.
Why are we witnessing a resurgence of coups d’état in West Africa?
Unfortunately, in Guinea, Mali and Chad, individual logics have amputated the power of its public dimension. These coups d’état underline the failure of previous transitions to emancipate States from their leaders and to sanction the break with the authoritarian and patrimonialist modalities of political governance. The political field of these countries has always been a place of battle, of merciless struggle for the control of power and the privileges to which it gives rise.
When you are president, minister or in their entourage, you are outlaw. In Guinea, the population was bloodless because crushed by the weight of corruption and the punctures. Shortly before his fall, Alpha Condé allowed himself to increase the price of fuel and telephone taxes. It was too much. These acts of assumed indifference towards the people explain why, in Guinea as in Mali [en août 2020], the people hailed the coups. Only the army could provide oxygen to the people.
Why do the military interfere in the political arena?
“Our institutions have been captured, stunned by the arbitrariness of individuals. “
There is no other arbiter. The state does not exist. In a so-called democratic society, it is the institutions that settle disputes. In Mali as in Guinea, the legal and institutional framework of the States is not effective. If he was, Alpha Condé could not have run for his third term. The army would not have been mobilized to suppress demonstrations either. Our institutions have been plunged into a great vacuum. They were captured, stunned by the arbitrariness of individuals.
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