Thursday 26 April 2018

Plan reached to resolve Guinea-Bissau crisis

Plan reached to resolve Guinea-Bissau crisis
(AFP 09/11/16)

The opposing sides in Guinea-Bissau's political crisis have accepted a plan that would see a new "consensus" government formed, West African leaders said Saturday.

Guinea-Bissau has been in the throes of a power struggle since August 2015, when President Jose Mario Vaz sacked Domingos Simoes Pereira, the leader of the ruling African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC), as prime minister.

Vaz named Baciro Dja as his choice to take over the job in June, but a powerful faction of the party have protested the decision ever since.

Guinea's President Alpha Conde headed up a delegation from regional bloc ECOWAS (the Economic Community of West African States) to defuse the crisis, and the group on Saturday said the feuding sides had agreed on a six-point plan.

This would include the "formation of an inclusive consensus government" with a two-year mandate, following a dialogue between the different groups to develop a two-year working plan.

"Now everything depends on the willingness of the Bissau-Guineans," Minister of State Naby Youssouf Kiridi Bangoura told AFP.

No timeline was given for the mooted new government to take power.

The plan would also see the two sides accept changes to the constitution, electoral legislation, and laws governing political parties.

Guinea-Bissau has been plagued by military coups and instability since its independence from Portugal in 1974, and has more recently become a key cocaine trafficking hub.

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