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

India PM Modi's Party Distances Itself From Religious Conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic 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.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid