ECOWAS in Abidjan to “consolidate and strengthen” the results

A joint delegation led by ECOWAS, but also including the African Union and the United Nations, is in Abidjan on Monday 5 and Tuesday 6 October.

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as reported from Abidjan,

To ECOWAS, we designate this visit as Ivory Coast mission “preventive diplomacy” for the presidential election on 31 October. A mission designed to “consolidate and reinforce” results, according to the regional organization. Under the leadership of the Ghanaian Foreign Minister, it will meet with the ministers and institutions responsible for organizing the elections, political and diplomatic actors, but also President Alassane Ouattara.

The head of Ghanaian diplomacy, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, is accompanied in particular by the Special Representative for United Nations in West Africa, Mohamed Ibn Chambas. He was already in Abidjan in late September for a first good office mission. He had especially met Alassane Ouattara to whom he had expressed “United Nations concern over the persistence of the lack of consensus on certain aspects of the process”.

During his visit to Abidjan, nine relatives of Guillaume Soro in preventive detention had been released since December. “A welcome gesture”, according to the UN envoy. Four other releases took place at the end of last week.

A goal of appeasement in a context that is still politically tense. Less than four weeks before the presidential election, the opposition is preparing to launch major mobilization slogans to block Ouattara’s candidacy and postpone the election. For his part, Alassane Ouattara does not want to hear about a postponement and says he is ready no matter what happens to a vote on 31 October. “The date is written in the constitution,” his supporters hammer out.

The joint mission will also meet with candidates, political parties, civil society or diplomats before leaving on Tuesday night.

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