President Alassane Ouattara Grants Clemency to General Bruno Dogbo Blé and 50 Others

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
3 Min Read
Alassane

President Alassane Ouattara has granted clemency to 51 individuals convicted of crimes during the country’s crises, as announced on Thursday, February 22nd. This act comes amidst a backdrop of national unity following the victory of the Elephants at the 34th Africa Cup of Nations.

In a solemn declaration delivered Thursday evening following a National Security Council meeting, Fidèle Sarassoro, the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council, praised the successful implementation of the CAN security measures. The Ivorian President urged his team to continue fostering “the spirit of cohesion.” Building on this momentum, he granted clemency to 51 individuals convicted during the country’s past crises.

“The President of the Republic, in line with his commitment to vigorously promote peace in our country, informed the National Security Council of his decision to grant presidential clemency to civilians and military personnel convicted of offenses committed during the post-electoral crises and against the security of the state. Among these individuals are Mr. Dogbo Blé Bruno, Mr. Gnatoa Katet Paulin, Mr. Katé Kouamé Jean-Baptiste, and Mr. Kamagaté Souleymane,” listed Fidèle Sarassoro.

The Executive Secretary of the CNS also announced that a memorial honoring “the serious crises the country has experienced” will soon be erected. On Wednesday, the Prime Minister met with victims’ associations to express his “compassion” and “urge them to forgive.” Reacting to these pardons, the Ivorian Movement for Human Rights (MIDH) continues to demand reparations. “We cannot overlook all that these victims have endured. While these measures promote reconciliation and appeasement, we must not forget the victims,” believes Bamba Drissa, the president of the MIDH.

Easing Tensions

This presidential clemency is a unifying gesture aimed at the political class. It is also a sign of easing tensions toward two opposition figures known for their firm stance against the president. On paper, this clemency primarily concerns individuals who participated in civil disobedience in 2020. It also includes significant supporters of former President Laurent Gbagbo and Guillaume Soro.

Since his return to Ivory Coast, Laurent Gbagbo has made the release of civilian and military prisoners a point of discussion. The majority of individuals listed by the PPA-CI have now been granted clemency. This is a significant step that now allows for the rekindling of political dialogue, believes Jean Gervais Tcheïdé, the secretary-general of the party and deputy spokesperson of the PPA-CI.

Several unresolved questions remain to be addressed before the 2025 presidential election: the reintegration of Laurent Gbagbo on the electoral list, the status of Guillaume Soro, currently in exile in the sub-region, and more broadly, the issue of the electoral list, criticized by the opposition during the municipal elections.

Soukaina Sghir

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