Gbagbo Takes Control Over The National Electricity Company
The economic war goes on in Ivory Coast between incumbent president Laurent Gbagbo and president-elect Alassane Ouattara as the former attempts to secure his mandate, whereas the latter wants to take what is internationally acknowledged as his.
This announcement comes at a time when the West African bank understood that there was no way to prevent Gbagbo from taking money out of the banks, since he has the power to influence the regular employees, in spite of the threats made against them by Ouattara who said they would be prosecuted as collaborators with the regime.
Ouattara’s Prime Minister said on Wednesday that since the economic sanctions prove fruitless, the military intervention is the only way to restore democracy in Ivory Coast, after Gbagbo repeatedly refused to leave power in peace and go into exile.
The West African countries wanted to prevent the military intervention in a country that suffered from civil war for decades.
However, they cannot allow this situation to go on, given that ten more nations in Africa hold elections this year and that Gbagbo’s example could be construed as a “trend setter.”
Ecowas, the economic community of the West African states, is pushing for a diplomatic solution, though it is more than obvious that it is not working.
Some of the nations in Ecowas supported the idea of military intervention, while others, like Ghana, a leading member of the group, opposed.
The solution of economic sanctions was found, and the central bank of West Africa removed Gbagbo the right to sign checks and take money from the banks in his country.
The plan did not work, because Gbagbo is in power, and may have threatened them into obedience.
Then, the president-elect asked the companies that trade cocoa not to deal with Gbagbo’s regime anymore.
Anyway, it would seem that Gbagbo finds a way around sanctions and strengthens his regime.
On Thursday, president Gbagbo seized the nation’s electric company in what is deemed as a final attempt to cling to power.
According to the national electricity company the central distribution center has been seized by Gbagbo’s government on behalf of national security.
Gbagbo’s soldiers also surrounded the central bank in Abidjan, as a result of the decision to shut down the branches in the country.11