In 2010, during the presidential campaign, Alassane Ouattara vowed that there would “never be a political prisoner again under his mandate”.
Coming to power, following a fratricidal war which ended with the arrest of President Laurent Gbagbo on April 11, 2011, Mr. Alassane OUATTARA had many FPI executives, militants and sympathizers imprisoned in order to establish and stabilize his power. The lucky ones were forced into exile; unfortunately, some returned to their country with their feet in front (they died in exile: the list is of personalities and anonymous people is very long). Even today, most of the military detainees from this period languish in jail.
After the divorce between the PDCI and the RHDP, it was the turn of many cadres and activists and sympathizers of the PDCI who languish in the dungeons of power OUATTARA. Some are persecuted and forced into exile (Akossi Benjo) others relieved of their administrative functions because they refused to belong to the RHDP.
We note the OUATTARA manhunt against President Guillaume SORO, due not only to his refusal to belong to the RHDP but also to officially declare himself a candidate in the presidential elections of October 31, 2020, and that since 2019. There followed, therefore, a purge of all pro-SOROs both in the army, in the Ivorian senior administration and in the Ivorian parliament. Thus, activists, elected officials and GPS executives still remain in prisons, without trial, in defiance of their rights and immunities, and have been for more than a year. Such a practice is in violation of article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948 which states: “No one may be arbitrarily arrested, detained or exiled”.
In the aftermath of Mr. OUATTARA’s announcement to run for a third term, in flagrant violation of our constitution, many Ivorians have been kidnapped and thrown into prisons without any form of trial; the offense for some is to denounce this constitutional coup and call for a peaceful march; for others, it is walking peacefully to cry out their anger at the violation of our Basic Law.
Recently, political parties have been “beheaded” by the hunt and imprisonment of the leaders who drive them. In other words, it is the death knell for the entire opposition platform that is targeted by this manhunt for the executives animating the life of these political parties.
The ICCI has always denounced the risk of violence, the consequences of which would be incalculable. But alas in vain.
When we want to talk about peace and national reconciliation, we must not have political prisoners less prisoners of conscience unjustly held in prisons.
This is why the Coalition of Indignados of Côte d’Ivoire is asking that they all be released so that we can engage in a sincere dialogue, a pledge of peace and development of our country.
The Coalition des Indignés de Côte d’Ivoire still continues to demand the release of Pulchérie GBALET because her place is not in prison. She had only her voice as the only weapon to oppose the violation of our constitution. Those who must be in prison are those who killed, betrayed their oath, looted public funds, made the school drug market, kidnapped our children etc.
Done in Abidjan on December 15, 2020.
For the Coalition des Indignés de Côte d’Ivoire, the national coordinator