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The Resurrection of the Guinea Massacre of 28th September, 2009

The Resurrection of the Guinea Massacre of 28th September, 2009

Japhil Yila Esq

The Resurrection of the Guinea Massacre of 28th September, 2009

By Japhil Yila esq

After 13 years, 28th September, 2009 rape, mutilation and massacre at the stadium in the Guinean capital Conakry, the former Junta military coup leader Captain Moussa Dadis Camara and 10 of his Lieutenants have been arraigned before a court on the 28th September, 2022-the 13th anniversary of the bloody attack to answer the allegations of human abused and death of over 157 protesters during his reign.According to his lawyer Almamy Samory, the former leader would appear before thecourt on the said date from Burkina Faso to Guinea to prove his innocence! Lawyers are enchanters, aren’t they?

On the said 28th September, 2009, a group of NGO’s and some opposition groups organized a pro-democracy rally at a stadium in Conakry. Thousands gathered to protest against the looming candidacy of Moussa in the then presidential elections. After the death of President Lansana Conte2008, he seized power in a bloodless coup in December shortly. With the promised to step down in few months, but when he reneged on his promise, Guineans went to protest.

Today he was accused of instigating that violence where which, he ordered his military to repel the protest at the stadium and as a result, 157 people were killed, many badly disfigured and over 100 women raped. His predecessor Alpha Conde deliberately failed to bring the perpetrators to book amidst world outrage. Meanwhile, the resilience and activism of the victims lawyer, Asmau Diallo the president of the NGO Association Victims, Parents and Friends of September 28 Massacre [AVIPA] reiterated that ‘ we really want the truth, we want reparations, we want recognition on a national level for all the events of September, 28. And we are hoping for justice to be delivered clearly and transparently, not just a mock trail…’

Similarly, the Minister of Justice Alphonse Wright said recently in a press briefing ‘…the proceeding would ‘revisit’ our history and ensure that we all come out of this trial with a new vision of Guinea, where impunity will no longer have its place..’ The main chief actors are Moussa Dadis Camara, Moussa Tiegboro Camara and Cherif Daiby. While the former exiled to Burkina Faso, only to show up for his trial on the 28th September, 2022, the latter remained as military officers in the country all through the 13 years!

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Guinea is a coastal country in West Africa, bordering the Atlantic Ocean to the West, Guinea-Bissau to the Northwest, Cote d’Ivoire to the East, Sierra Leone and Liberia to the South and Senegal to the North. It has a population of 13. Million. Over the years, the country has suffered dictatorial rule and still currently led by a dictator, Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, who overthrew Alpha Conde, a civilian President in 2021. The Economic Communities of West African States has frozen the government of Doumbouya financial account and barred its members from interacting with the country. This is mainly as a result of multiple coups therein and gross violation of human rights. It’s disheartening to know that amidst rich in natural resources like gold and bauxite, the country remains one of the poorest in the world.

The French ruled the country ‘till 1958 and while vacating, they, as usual destroyed the infrastructures and all well laid functionalities of the future government. Ahmed Sekou Toure was elected, making him the first indigenous President of the country. Toure’s government later became a polarizing one, by becoming intolerant of dissent, and senselessly imprisoning hundreds and stifling free press and human rights. His government targeted real and imagined opponents driving thousands of them into exile. In 1970, Portuguese military forces staged an Operation Green Sea with collaboration with exiled opponents invaded Guinea with the aim of capturing Toure dead or alive. But they failed. Subsequently, several more failed attempt was carried on him. But he finally died in the U.S in 1984 after a heart attack operation. Col. Lansana Conte took over power immediately, in what can be practically called bloodless coup d’état with the help of his friend Diarra Traore. Praiseworthily, he denounced the previous regime’s abuse on human rights by releasing over 250 political prisoners and allowed the exiled political opponents to return home.

But in 1995 he imprisoned his political rival Alpha Condewho would later become president. Conte died in December 2008 and Moussa Dadis took over power and became head of the Junta. Meanwhile, in less than a year, he ordered the execution of protesters when he declared interest to run for the country’s presidency. He was forced to flee the country and the country elected Alpha Conde as the President in 2010. Conde failed to bring Dadis to justice after several pressures from International Communities. His government was overthrown in September, 2021 by Col Mamady.

Meanwhile, as anticipated, the case was mentioned in the court and as usual the accused persons pleaded not guilty to all the charges and the case adjourned. But the fear and predicament in the hearts of most Guineans is; the rate to trust the prosecution. The people are not too confident in the government commitment to ensure fairness and justice in the trial. They only see it as political motivation. A smokescreen to something sinister! Besides, both Camara and Mamady have things in common; they have military background. It all points to one concept; the whole thing seemed to be a game. First to give the International Communities what they have been advocating for as well as the concerned Guineans, on one hand. While on the other hand, Mamady will enter the good books of the world and will get acceptability. At the end when his aim is achieved, he will simply frustrate the trial and Camara goes free. This is how things are done in Africa.

The Resurrection of the Guinea Massacre of 28th September, 2009

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