Guinea Bissau Names New PM In Pre-Election Crisis

 

Guinea Bissau’s president named a new prime minister Tuesday after sacking the previous government in a bid to tackle a deadly political crisis less than a month before an election.

President Jose Mario Vaz tried to put an end to months of confrontation between him and the government by firing the whole cabinet on Monday.

On Tuesday he appointed former premier Faustino Imbali, 63, as the new prime minister in a decree.

Imbali is tasked with forming a new government to steer the west African country towards elections scheduled on November 24.

Opposition supporters have been protesting over recent months for the election to be delayed, complaining of a risk of voting fraud.

A clash between police and opposition demonstrators on Monday left one protester dead.

Vaz, 61, has governed since 2014 in Guinea Bissau, a state stricken by poverty, corruption and drug trafficking.

Home to fewer than two million people, it has seen a series of coups and governments following independence from Portugal in 1974, as well as an 11-year civil war.

Vaz’s five-year mandate ended on June 23 but he is staying on temporarily under a mediation plan forged by the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

He intends to stand again as an independent candidate.

AFP