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Sarkozy, Hollande, Bolloré, Kouchner… Where are Alpha Condé’s ‘friends’?

François Soudan
By François Soudan
Editor-in-chief of Jeune Afrique

Posted on Tuesday, 14 December 2021 11:09, updated on Monday, 17 January 2022 16:20

Alpha Condé and Nicolas Sarkozy, 6 August 2021, at the Sekhoutoureya Palace © DR

Overthrown on 5 September by a military coup and placed under house arrest, Guinea’s former president Alpha Condé, who was once very well-connected, is learning the painful lesson of solitude that afflicts fallen heads of state.

100 days. 100 never-ending days for him, during which he was deprived of all contact with the outside world and then placed under strict house arrest at the home of an absent wife, with whom he has never really lived. 100 days of languishing, between anger, incomprehension and dismay since the gloomy dawn of 5 September, when the Special Forces burst into his room, after having drowned the presidential guard in blood and shredded his chief, Colonel Yemoiba Camara, with a grenade.

Ever since an announcement was made at the beginning of December that a Cour de Répression des Crimes Économiques et Financiers would be created, all of Conakry has been speculating about whether Alpha Condé will be making an appearance there.

This is because it is difficult to believe that this court was not set up with the sole intention of judging – among others – figures from the former regime. Some members of Mamadi Doumbouya’s close entourage would like the very present and discreet minister of defence, retired General Sidiki Camara (aka “Idi Amin”), to appear first.

After all, this type of trial could be the best way to satisfy Doumbouya’s supporters and dominate public opinion for the duration of the transitional period which, in all likelihood and at the rate at which the junta intends to reshape the electoral process (a complete “reset”, from the district to the presidential election), will last well beyond 2022.