Guinea: Military Junta to change uniform and run for President?

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Captain Moussa Dadis Camara has told Guineans, and foreign observers that he cannot be stopped should he change his Military Camouflage to a Politicians Suit, and run in the forthcoming national elections. Dadis Camara took over power last December after the country’s president died and vowed to stand down after a transitional phase.

Despite the captain’s seige of power, and the fact that his reign has been characterized by questionble displays of power, his supporters have formed a group called ‘Dadis Must Stay’ backing his right to run in the forthcoming elections.

“They (the opposition) are not really on top of things and no longer know which way to turn. I have still not made up my mind so they should keep quiet, otherwise they are going to lose everything. I have nothing more to say, except that I might or might not stand. No-one can stop me,” Capt. Camara is quoted as saying.

Opposition groups are calling on him to step down, describing his regime as a confiscation of power and urging people to resist his hunger for power. Capt Camara had pledged to rid the country of graft and nepotism and improve living standards for the country’s population of 10 million.

The Junta seized power after the death of former president Mr. Conte, who had ruled Guinea for 24 years. Within hours of his death, an announcement on state radio said the army had dissolved the government. Troops and tanks were sent on to the streets, manning roadblocks. There was no violence and the country has remained calm.

The African Union, European Union, United States, Ecowas and former colonial power France all condemned Capt. Camara. In an attempt to win over his critics, Capt. Camara invited representatives from the international community to meet with him in the Guinean capital of Bamako. The captain pledged to hold free and transparent elections after a two-year transitional period, at the end of 2010, and now it seems likely that he will run for the top office against local and international public opinion.

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