Thursday, August 15, 2013

General Sanogo

Malian coup leader Sanogo jumps from Captain to General  in surprise promotion, it was  announced from the council of ministers in Bamako yesterday.
Now, hold on, what is going on here? Is this a last act of Dionkounda, the still reigning interim President,  or the first act of IBK, President elect? Bamako must be abuzz with rumours and theories. It may not have been IBK's move, but it seems improbable that he was not in the know. The timing of the controversial announcement was crucial however, because he will  be able to  disassociate himself from it, claiming he has not yet taken up office.  

Predictably the announcement caused a storm on Malijet  with hundreds of conflicting opinions, pro or anti Sanogo. “Why should he be honoured- he was the one who got us into the mess of the last 18 months!” rage a large camp, while others still see in Sanogo the saviour of Mali, however unlikely this seems. The followers of ‘Aya’ are many. ‘If we had not had the coup, we would still be in the same soup as before- the intended election in 2012 would only have brought a feeble turnout as people were thoroughly fed up  with democracy itself’,  goes the argument.  The ATT government and what went in its wake had  to be uprooted by force and Mali needed to be kick started is the opinion of many. These would still claim that Sanogo’s coup was a salutary event, whatever the consequences.   The recent election was a success for democracy with record turn out.  IBK has just been elected with nearly 78% of the votes.  Without Sanogo’s coup this situation would never have come about, is the argument of many who see a new Mali rising from the ashes...
Nevertheless it seems like a provocative move at a time when Mali needs reconciliation. And there are others who should perhaps be honoured: ‘why not Gamou for General? Does he not deserve it more?’ some are asking...
(see Colonel Gamou in the blogsearch above).


Blogger Unknown said...

Malian politics are as tangled and as tightly entwined as the very threads of MaliMali on the loom and none of us can predict how or if its colours can come true.

Amen and goodnight!

9:39 PM  
Blogger toubab said...

Indeed, Claire!
But an exciting time, and full of hope for Mali...Just spoke to my Keita, who is thrilled about 'General Sanogo'. He thinks it is IBK's way of showing his gratitude- he claims that Sanogo put his weight behind the IBK campaign and secured its success.Whatever, the mandate is HUGE and incontestable, alhamdilullah!

6:31 AM  
Blogger Susan Scheid said...

Even with the twists and turns, it is so good to read of the wonderful turn-out for the election and this hopeful news for Mali. There must indeed be magic in the name of Keita!

12:22 AM  
Blogger toubab said...

Yes isn't it Susan!(And guess who is with me here in the deepest Swedish forests? Our very own David with Jeremiah! more of this later- tonight we will be going to see Das Rheingold in a fantastic setting- a disused mine now made into concert venue..)

7:01 AM  
Blogger Laurent said...

Another Idi Amin in the making, these African generals tend to be trigger happy. Would not be surprise to find him as President in 6 mo.

2:26 AM  
Blogger toubab said...

Yes, Laurent, there are plenty of people who see Sanogo as a President in the making. But I believe that if that happened, it won't be in 6 months, it will be in a democratic election, perhaps the next one- and if that is the case, who can complain? He really does have a huge following.
The other candidate in the second ballot, Soumaila Cisse, did not understand the extent of the following Sanogo commands. He and his 'anti -putch' coalition was quite literally wiped out- the Malian people was not as anti this coup as the world would have liked to believe- and I always maintained that the groundswell of Malian opinion has remained in favour of Sanogo- and now the people has spoken and there is no doubt that the people have chosen IBK with a crushing majority- and IBK was the candidate Sanogo supported.
Ah, the vagaries of democracy! The people do not always want what we want them to want!

5:34 PM  
Blogger Howard Lane said...

Shockingly I haven't seen any coverage of the election AT ALL in the UK!

8:03 PM  
Blogger toubab said...

Well it just proves that good news don't sell! This election was a fantastic step forward in the rehabilitation of Mali. Many newspapers, the Guardian in particular, had been griping on about what a disaster this election would be- it was too early; Mali was not prepared; it was bound to spark violence etc. Well, it didn't happen. So they prefer not to talk about it because their analysts clearly got it wrong!

5:52 AM  

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