I’m not leaving! Crisis after President fires PM in Guinea-Bissau
Aristides Gomes has refused to step down after the President appointed a new Prime Minister for Guinea-Bissau.
According to Reuters, President Jose Mario Vaz fired Gomes on Monday.
However, when Reuters reached Gomes for comment, he said: “I am in my office, working.”
This despite the President naming Faustino Fudut Imbali as the new Prime Minister and dissolving the government.
According to the President, the current political situation was undermining normal operations of state institutions.
Gomes however insists that the sacking order is illegitimate since the President’s term technically expires on June 23.
However, ECOWAS later declared that President Vaz could stay in office through to the November election.
This led to bitter power struggle between Vaz and the ruling party.
The next presidential election is scheduled for November 24 and Vaz will be seeking to retain his seat but as an independent candidate.
This is after he fell out with the African Party of the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC) after sacking his Prime Minister in 2015.
Guinea-Bissau has had several bouts of instability since it became independent from Portugal in 1974; there had been nine coups and attempted coups.
Reuters also reported a surge in cocaine trafficking from South America that was linked to senior military officials.
The country has however been peaceful since Vaz came to power in 2014 election.
Vaz however clashed over the balance of power in the semi-presidential system with names of PM candidates forwarded by PAIGC, which controls a majority in parliament.
During the weekend, demonstrations from a party opposed to Gomes’s government took to the streets in the capital Bissau.
They demanded the election be postponed so that voter lists could be checked for irregularities.
One protester died on Saturday and several were wounded.
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