Burkina Faso: Coup Leader Says He Will Not Hold Power For Too Long

By Lateef Adegbite

Amid the condemnation of the coup, on Friday, September 30, 2022, in the poor West African country of Burkina Faso, by the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, African Union, AU, European Union, EU,   and the Leadership of the American country of the United States, US, and France, Coup Leader, Ibrahim Traore, described as an obscure Army Captain, had said that ‘’he will not hold power for too long’’.  He was emphatic. ‘’We did not come to continue in office, or for a particular purpose’’.

 As a prelude to handing over to a Democratically elected government on 2024, the 34 year –old Army Captain, and his supporters, who had overthrown Lt. Colonel Paul- Henri Damiba, the country’s former Head of the military junta, the country’s second coup in one year, had said that ‘’a national conference that would be established by his Administration soon will appoint a new interim President by the end of the year who would either be a Civilian or military person. He was silent whether the military person would be a serving or retired military officer.

The Burkina Faso, Army Captain, may have taken a cue from Asimi Goita, 38,  and  Mamady Doubouya,  a  41, a  year-old French Legionare, who were said to have overthrown elected governments in their home countries, Guinea and Mali , respectively, and have been under pressre from the International Community to return power to Civilians, to draw up his own Transitional programme, which, analysts had said  is a continuation of the implementation of Lt. Colonel Damiba, the former Transitional President Agenda.

 The former military Leader, Damiba, who was said to have have given Captain Traore group which overthrew him seven conditions for stepping down as the country’s Transitional President which includes safety guarantees for safety himself and allies in the military, and that the pledge which he had given to ECOWAS, for return to Democratic rule within two years must be respected’’.

This may have informed, why new youthful, Burkina Faso,Leader, had said that ‘’the junta must ‘’honour the agreement which the deposed Damiba’s government had with the ECOWAS, to return power to a democratically elected government by 2024. He was said to have made the same promise when he granted an interview to French state RFI, he has’’ to uphold the July 24, timelime for restoring Civilian rule in the country’’. He may have gladdened the heart of the people when he said that ‘’this could even happen before that date if conditions were right’’.

  Many believe that the ambitious, Burkina Faso Army Captain, who knows little or nothing about what good governance, is all about, may have been encouraged to use the gun with his supporters to rise to prominence   because of the alarming level of hunger, described as the worst hunger crisis facing the country over the last six years which includes people from his own village, Bondokuy, in western Faso,who were said to have always pressure on him forFinancial support whenever he was at home to see his parents.  

There are indications that that more than 630,000 people in the country are on the brink of starvation.  He believes that past Leaders of the country, which include, both civilians and military, have not done enough to pull the country out of poverty.

More pathetic in the country was the activities of the non -state actors who were said to be controlling 40 percent of the country, because of their alleged link to both al-Qaeda and the ISIS group, which had made it the nation the new center of conflict in the Sahel region as they have made it extremely difficult for the United Nations, UN, aid, to reach those in dire need of support.

There is no gain saying the fact given the poor economic situation of the Burkina Forso, Coup Leaders, have never been short of reasons for coming into power.  Take for instance, Captain Traore and his fellow aggrieved officers , opposed to the  Lt. Colonel Damiba , the country’s  former Leader had said that  he and his group removed him from  office,   because of his ‘’inability  to deal  with an  armed uprising  in the country that has worsened in the last nine months and unite country.

 The former Burkina Faso military Leader who have taking asylum in Togo, may have taken his removal from office in good faith as he came in through unconstitutional means.  He was said to have advised Captain Traore military junta ‘’to unite the country since he could not to do it rather than further divide it’’.

This may have informed why the Burkina Coup Leader had said that ‘’all that matters to the junta now, when the level of security improves in the country is its development’’. This clearly shows that the Geology Graduate who joined the Burkina Faso, Army, in 2010, may not be in a hurry to leave, having tested power.

Recall that in overthrowing the more than  six year –old elected government of President Roch  Kabore, Lt. Colonel, Dnmaiba, the immediate past President of Burkina Faso, had said that he and his group were encouraged to depose President Kabore because of his inability   to unite the country  and control the deteriorating security situation of the country.

Agency reports said the situation in the West African country is tense as France, the former Colnisers,  have told its Citizens  in Ouagadougou, the country’s Capital’’ of between  4,000 and 5,000, to stay at home while the EU, was aid to have expressed ‘’concern’’  at the unfolding events.

As at Monday, October 3, 2022, calm was said to have returned to Ouagadougou, to the jubilation of the people, after Lt. Colonel Daniba the country’s former Leader  fled to neighbouring Togo.

The ECOWAS Leadership, may have sent a message to Captain Traore, the Burkina Faso , Head of military Jjunta, that  ‘’its unequivocal  opposition  to any seizure  or maintenance of power  by  an unelected  unconstitutional means  remains’’, meaning that the economic bloc Leaders will ostracize him  ,and would not give the country any assistance, which may further worsen the country’s economic problem.

Issoufou: Former Niger President, Led ECOWAS DElgation To Burkina Faso, To Meet The Junta

But on Sunday, October 2, 2022,   the regional economic block had issued a Statement welcoming ‘’a new peaceful settlement of p the   difference in the country. It had dispatched a high –powered delegation to Ouagadougou, led by Mahamadou Issou, former Niger President, who was aid to have met Captain Traore, the self-proclaimed Leader of Burkina Faso.

The ECOWAS delegation, were said to have arrived the country on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, but were aid to have been greeted by protest outside the Ouagadougou , airport, s the protesters chanted’’anti-French and anti-ECOWAS slogans’’,  insisting that ‘’it is time  for the Burkina Faso  manage its own return to security normalcy’’.

The Authority of Heads of State and Government, of ECOWAS, may have picked interest in the Burkina Faso, political crisis,  because’’ the country   is a strategic lynchpin  in the western Sahel conflict , with terrorism  already spreading  to other West African Coastal states  

Captain Traore and his sponsors Of the Friday, September 3, 2022, Coup, in the country, may have known that  ECOWAS, has a major stake  in the country’s  move to achieve total security  to secure that the region is safe  that they have plotted he Coup to draw the economic bloc Leaders attention.

 Michael Shurkin, an analyst had said that that Burkina Faso, had been turned into a Coup plotter’s haven, because  of the so believe  that ‘’if  Burkina Faso falls, it puts  the other  West African countries  that surround  sound he country in danger’’.

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