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Vol 44 No 7

Published 4th April 2003


Up for grabs

As President Lansana Conté lies dying, the international community courts Guinea

Gravely ill with complications from diabetes, President Lansana Conté has withdrawn to his home village of Moussayah, leaving the army and the divided opposition holding their breath (AC Vol 44 No 6). Officially, he is due to stand for a third term in December but few expect him to live that long. With no obvious successor, a dangerous power vacuum looms in a region already struggling with linked conflicts in Liberia and Côte d'Ivoire. Fodé Soumah, Deputy Central Bank Governor and a leading figure in the ruling Parti de l'Unité et du Progrès (PUP), has the surreal task of travelling Guinea to drum up votes. The independent media are asking questions about his campaign funds: L'Economiste has reported that he has a budget of 40 billion Guinean francs (US$20 million) of state funds.

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