Thursday, February 3, 2011

Burkina Faso: When President Campaore the Mediator Himself is Tainted...


President Campaore
of Burkina Faso 
OpinionOne irony of African politics is that mediators to conflicts on the continent appear to have more skeletons in their cupboards than those whose actions bring about those conflicts in the first place. One of the prominent figures mediating in the political conflict in the Cote d'Ivoire crisis is Blaise Campaore, President of Burkina Faso.

The Burkina Faso leader is trying to persuade Laurent Gbagbo and Alassane Ouattara to find an amicable solution to the conflict created by Gbagbo's refusal to cede power to Ouattara, the internationally recognised winner of last month's Ivorian presidential elections.

This morning, Ghanaian leader John Evans Atta Mills is expected to join other leaders from the international community in the coronation of Blaise Campaore as President of the Republic of Burkina Faso in Ouagadougou.

The Chronicle regrets to state that the mediator himself cannot be a good example of leadership in the sub-region. We would have wished that the President of the Republic of Ghana, being touted as one of the few examples of true democratic societies in Africa, stayed away from endorsing the Burkinabe leader.

Campaore became leader of Burkina Faso as a young revolutionary on October 15, 1987, 23 years and two months ago. He was indicted in the murder of Thomas Sankara, who had staged a coup d'etat, with Campaore as his main aide in 1985.

Last month, Campaore won 80.2 percent of the popular votes, beating Hama Arba Dialo (8.2 percent), Benewende Stanislav Sankara (6.3 percent), Boakari Kabore (2.3 percent) and Maxim Kabore (1.5 percent) at the polls.

The Burkinabe leader won the election as a presidential candidate in 1991. In 1998, he was re-elected Head of State. In 2000, a constitutional amendment was effected in Burkina Faso, limiting the President's term to only two, and the period of a term reduced from seven years to five.

The Chronicle regrets to state that Campaore and his supporters have since 2005, succeeded in muffling opposition to his re-election, in spite of the constitutional amendment. Like Gbagbo, Campaore succeeded in getting the Constitutional Council in Burkina Faso to rule in favour of his continued leadership in October 2005.

The Constitutional Council ruled that because Campaore was the sitting President in 2000, the amendment could not apply to him until his second term in 2005. We are at the close of 2010 and Campaore is still at the helm of affairs.

In fact, no one knows when his term will officially run out. We do not believe that Campaore is any better than Gbagbo, in terms of their ability to defy the will of the people.

Campaore might have won an election. Our contention is that it is an election that should not have featured his name on the ballot box in the first place. When the mediator is tainted, it does not send out any good signals that West Africa has any intention of ending the conflict in Cote d'Ivoire in the near future.

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Inside Liberia with Bernard Gbayee Goah

Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah


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