Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Hope fading for Gbagbo removal from power

Hope is fading fast for the removal of Laurent Gbagbo, the Ivorian leader who defied a presidential election loss and has continued on president despite stringent international pressure to step down.
Diplomatic efforts and threats of his removal by force seem to have done little to weaken his resolve to cling to power despite clearly losing to Outtara according to the Independent Electoral commission of Ivory Coast and UN observers.
Despite several diplomatic pleas including visits by Thabo Mbeki,and an ECOWAS presidents' delegation and Kenyan Prime Minister Odinga's visits to Abidjan under AU urging to plead with Gbagbo to step down, the Ivorian leader is still hanging tough and rejecting any pleas to vanquish state power.
The United States recently proposed to him a generous offer for a post-presidential residency in America which he flatly declined.
Even threats of a military removal have not bore fruit.
And cracks are beginning to emerge in West Africa's ECOWAS resolve to bring Gbagbo to relinquish power.
Ghana announced yesterday that it would not take part in the military removal of Gbagbo because its military is 'overstreched',a clear signal that the alliance against Gbagbo's removal is cracking.
Already the international press is talking about a 'unity government', language which just a few days ago, was alien territory.
It would appear that the prospects of Gbagbo's removal from power are fading fast and a Kenyan-Zimbabwe option seem progressively alluring.
The losers will be Ivory Coast and electoral democracy on the African continent.
The Kenyan and Zimbabwean precedent and now in Ivory Coast seems to point to the demise of African presidential electoral democracy.

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