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Guinea: Dadis may not return until after elections

By  | 4 September 2015 at 00:09 | 1518 views

Now it’s becoming clear why former Guinean junta leader Captain (Rtd) Moussa Dadis Camara (also known as Moise or Moses) was recently taken off an Air Burkinabe flight bound for Abidjan at Accra’s Kotoka International airport and sent back to Ouagadougou, the Burkina Faso capital.

He has been living in that country since he was shot in the head and nearly killed in December 2009 by his bodyguard Abubakar Diakite Toumba. He was quickly flown to Morocco where the bullet was removed. After he recovered, his comrades in arms in Conakry told him not to return, on pain of death. He was then offered asylum by former Burkina Faso president Blaise Compaore, himself now in exile in Cote d’Ivoire
after he was chased out of power by massive demonstrations not too long ago.
Dadis was the first Guinean head of state to emerge from the forest of Guinea.

Filled with enthusiasm and all excited, Dadis was hoping to land in Conakry in his native country of Guinea after a brief stop in Guinea. But his plane was not allowed to land at Port Bouet airport in Abidjan, according to reports. The captain was told to head for Accra and get rid of Dadis who later ended up in Ouagadougou, a city he has been living in the past five years.

Dadis, a fierce reveolutionary with a law degree before he joined the Guinean army, wanted to register his own party and contest in the next Guinean elections slated for for October 11, this year.

But no, somebody or some people in Guinea do not want him to return home just yet. Indeed the deadline for presidential candidates to register with the Guinean electoral commission which was September 1, was long gone. Dadis will therefore have to wait for the next elections a few years from now if he wants to be head of state again, this time through the ballot box, not through the gun like he did in 2008.

Who wants Dadis back? Certainly not president Alpha Conde against whom Dadis has been making negative remarks lately. Their relationship was lukewarm in the past but deteriorated quickly a few months ago after Dadis decided to join forces, from his base in Ouaga, with Guinea’s foremost opposition leader Cellein Diallo. Some people say Cellein, a crafty and wily economist and former government minister, just wanted to use him to get votes from Guinea’s forest region where Dadis has massive support basically due ethnic loyalty from his people.

The October 11 election seems to be in Alpha Conde’s favour as incumbent. He also has the resources and the unflagging support of his Malinke people and some smaller ethnic groups while Cellein draws his support from the Peuhls (known as Fullahs in Sierra Leone) and some smaller ethnic groups in Peuhl country. He also hopes to capture a significant number of votes from the forest region with the help of Moussa Dadis Camara, who is still kicking his heels in Ouagadougou, frustrated and angry. He might well remain there until after the elections. Then the return.