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Guinea Interim PM Says He is Not Bound by Transitional Government Deal


The deal states that all members of the 101-member transitional government and the existing ruling military council are barred from running in elections planned for June.

Guinea's new civilian prime minister says he is not bound by terms of a deal for the transitional government that includes blocking him from running for president.

It took less than one week for the hope surrounding Guinea's transitional government to turn to doubt with the new interim prime minister saying he will not rule out running for president himself.

Veteran politician Jean Marie Dore was appointed prime minister this week by acting military leader General Sekouba Konate as part of a deal reached with the regional mediator - Burkinabe President Blaise Compaore - and Guinea's injured military leader Captain Moussa Dadis Camara.

That deal states that all members of the 101-member transitional government and the existing ruling military council are barred from running in elections planned for June.

But Prime Minister Dore says he has agreed to nothing.

Mr. Dore says the proposal of President Compaore is not an agreement, it is just a proposal. These proposals were given to both Guinea's civil society leaders and the country's ruling military council. And civil society leaders did not agree with its terms. He says President Compaore, General Konate, and Captain Camara signed what they call the Ouagadougou Accord. But that is not correct. it is nonsense.

Mr. Dore says he does not know the terms of the agreement between the Burkinabe leader and Guinea's military. They can give their own opinion. But civil society groups were not present during last week's talks in Burkina Faso. So, for them, it is not an accord until all parties agree.

He says mediators should only sign settlements as a witness once everyone agrees. Because Guinea's civil society has not yet agreed, Mr. Dore says, it is a bit bizarre that President Compaore is calling this an accord.

The prime minister says he will not answer the question of his potential candidacy until he meets further with General Konate and other members of the transitional government once they are appointed.

Mr. Dore's rival for the post of interim prime minister, labor leader Rabiatou Serah Diallo, says a politician should not have been chosen to help lead the transitional authority because it will raise questions about the impartiality of the elections to follow.

She says union leaders are ready to support Mr. Dore to get Guinea out of its political crisis but will, in her words, be "very vigilant" about watching his neutrality.

Having elections in six-months presents considerable logistical challenges for one of the world's poorest countries.

Prime Minister Dore is already talking about possible delay.

Dore says the transition could be one month. Or it could be three years. It all depends on evaluating what has already been done with voter registration. Dore says the transitional government will work to meet the six-month deadline. But everything does not depend on the government. If there is not money, it will take more time.

Dore says the success of this election depends on its organization. And that depends on the means to organize it properly. If these means are not available, he says, Guinea will continue to struggle.

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