Guinean Junta Leader Doumbouya Sworn in as Interim President
(Bloomberg) -- Mamady Doumbouya, the leader of a military junta that toppled Guinea’s President Alpha Conde last month, was sworn in as head of a transitional administration that will rule until elections are held.
Doumbouya took the presidential oath in the capital, Conakry, on Friday in front of diplomats and foreign dignitaries wearing military fatigues and black sunglasses. He pledged to end what he termed a “long political and economic crisis” in the West African nation, respect all of Guinea’s national and international accords and maintain good relations with its neighbors.
Regional leaders have been pushing for a swift transition to civilian rule in Guinea and want elections held within six months.
Doumbouya has said he will institute constitutional reforms without giving any indication of what that will entail or how long it will take. While concerns have been raised that he will try and cling to power, he gave assurances Friday that none of the transitional administration’s members will stand as candidates in the forthcoming election.
Former prime minister and opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo on Friday urged Doumbouya to lead Guinea out of the country’s current crisis and toward a return to constitutional order.
The 36-year-old Doumbouya served in the French foreign legion and was handpicked by Conde to lead a new special forces unit to tackle the region’s growing jihadist threat in a country that until now has been spared from attacks. The unit was later deployed to quash protests against Conde’s bid for a third term.
Guinea has some of the world’s largest reserves of iron ore and bauxite, which is processed into aluminum. Doumbouya has moved swiftly to reassure international mining companies such as United Co. Rusal of Russia and Aluminium Corp. of China Ltd. that their operations can continue unhindered under the nation’s military leadership.
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