News / Africa

Analyst: Ivorian Leader “Forgetting” Past Agreement

Ivorian-born Cornell University professor N'Dri Assie-Lumumba says 2005 Pretoria Agreement said the UN would certify election results

Presidents of Benin Boni Yayi (C) is escorted by Ivory Coast strongman Laurent Gbagbo's Prime Minister Gilbert Marie N'gbo Ake (R) as he arrives at Felix Houphouet Boigny airport in Abidjan before holding separate talks with Gbagbo and his rival Alassane
Presidents of Benin Boni Yayi (C) is escorted by Ivory Coast strongman Laurent Gbagbo's Prime Minister Gilbert Marie N'gbo Ake (R) as he arrives at Felix Houphouet Boigny airport in Abidjan before holding separate talks with Gbagbo and his rival Alassane

Multimedia

Audio
  • Ivorian-born U-S professor Assie-Lumumba spoke with Butty

James Butty

A U.S.-based Ivorian-born university professor told VOA Ivory Coast President Laurent Gbagbo has forgotten a 2005 agreement when he argues the international community is interfering in the country’s internal affairs.

N’Dri Assie-Lumumba, professor at the African Studies and Research Center at Cornell University, said Mr. Gbagbo agreed that the United Nations would certify the results of last month’s disputed election.

“It was in 2005, in Pretoria, that it was decided that the United Nations would have a very specific role to play in the process of election. Five years later, the elections have taken place and the United Nations had been playing the role that the outgoing president himself had agreed upon. Therefore, the argument that the external powers, with Western states as leaders, are trying to destabilize Cote d’Ivoire to take away its autonomy are irrelevant,” she said.

Assie-Lumumba said she would be one of those who would resist any external interference because she said African countries should continue to work hard to remain relevant as contemporary modern states with the power to deal with their own affairs.

UN peacekeepers in Ivory Coast
UN peacekeepers in Ivory Coast

But, she said Mr. Gbagbo is using external interference as a pretext to continue to cling to power.

Three West African presidents met with Mr. Gbagbo Tuesday in Abidjan to demand that he accept the results of last month's elections and step down or face possible removal by West African military forces.

Assie-Lumumba said Mr. Gbagbo should heed the advice of the sub-region and step down, but she said, given Mr. Gbagbo’s nature, she doubts he will step down voluntarily.

“He should listen, but I doubt he would listen. He’s not that type of person. Also, at this point, his mental state is involved in another sphere, literally thinking of himself as the one who will carry the flag of autonomy or of independence of Africa, evoking all kinds of arguments that have no relevance whatsoever in the situation that has been presented to us – that an election had taken place and there had been a clear winner and that he (Gbagbo) has decided to ignore the voice of the people,” Assie-Lumumba said.

She said the cancellation of a Wednesday rally in Abidjan by the youth wing that supports Mr. Gbagbo could be a sign that those around Mr. Gbagbo may be trying to soften their position.

“There are also many people around him who have an interest in seeing him stay in power. At the same time, at this point, some of them are trying to look at the big picture and to see their own interest. The sanctions will not affect Mr. Gbagbo alone. Many of the people who are supporting him will be affected by the sanctions,” Assie-Lumumba said.

She said, even though it seems the only language that Mr. Gbagbo understands is the use of force, West African leaders should not have threatened force. Instead, Assie-Lumumba said, sanctions are more powerful than violence.

You May Like

Video Obama to Send 3,000 Troops to Liberia in Ebola Fight

At Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, President says US will take leadership role for a global response to deadly Ebola virus that is ravaging West Africa More

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

Muslims in Kunming say that they condemn the violence, it is not a reflection of the true beliefs of their faith More

Humanitarian Aid, Equipment Blocked in Cameroon

Move is seen as a developing supply crisis in West Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Communityi
X
September 16, 2014 2:06 PM
Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video Enviropreneur Seeks to Save the Environment, Empower the Community

Lorna Rutto, a former banker, is now an ‘enviropreneur’ - turning plastic waste into furniture and fences discusses the challenges she faces in Africa with raw materials and the environment.
Video

Video West Trades Accusations Over Ransoms

As world leaders try to forge a common response to the threat posed by Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, there is simmering tension over differing policies on paying ransoms. In the past month, the jihadist group has beheaded two Americans and one Briton. Both countries refuse to pay ransom money. As Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London, there is uncertainty in the approach of some other European nations.
Video

Video Scotland Independence Bid Stokes Global Interest

The people of Scotland are preparing to vote on whether to become independent and break away from the rest of Britain, in a referendum being watched carefully in many other countries. Some see it as a risky experiment; while others hope a successful vote for independence might energize their own separatist demands. Foreign immigrants to Scotland have a front row seat for the vote. VOA’s Henry Ridgwell spoke to some of them in Edinburgh.
Video

Video Washington DC Mural Artists Help Beautify City

Like many cities, Washington has a graffiti problem. Buildings and homes, especially in low-income neighborhoods, are often targets of illegal artwork. But as we hear from VOA’s Julie Taboh, officials in the nation's capital have come up with an innovative program that uses the talents of local artists to beautify the city.
Video

Video US Muslim Leaders Condemn Islamic State

Leaders of America's Muslim community are condemning the violent extremism of the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. Muslim leaders say militants are exploiting their faith in a failed effort to justify violent extremism. VOA correspondent Meredith Buel reports.
Video

Video Americans' Reaction Mixed on Obama Strategy for Islamic State Militants

President Barack Obama’s televised speech on how the United States plans to “degrade and destroy” the group known as the Islamic State reached a prime-time audience of millions. And it came as Americans appear more willing to embrace a bolder, tougher approach to foreign policy. VOA producer Katherine Gypson and reporter Jeff Seldin have this report from Washington.
Video

Video Authorities Allege LA Fashion Industry-Cartel Ties

U.S. officials say they have broken up crime rings that funneled tens of millions of dollars from Mexican drug cartels through fashion businesses in Los Angeles. Mike O'Sullivan reports that authorities announced nine arrests, as 1,000 law enforcement agents fanned out through the city on Wednesday.
Video

Video Bedouin Woman Runs Successful Business in Palestinian City

A Bedouin woman is breaking social taboos by running a successful vacation resort in the Palestinian town of Jericho. Bedouins are a sub-group of Arabs known for their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Zlatica Hoke says the resort in the West Bank's Jordan Valley is a model of success for women in the region.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid