Guinea's ruling junta opens consultations on transition

Political parties, religious leaders, mining companies among participants.

Guinea's ruling junta opens consultations on transition

Guinea's ruling junta opened consultations Tuesday with political, business and religious leaders, hoping to draw a roadmap for a transition more than a week after a military coup that toppled President Alpha Conde. 

The four days of consultations at the parliament building in the capital Conakry, which will run through Friday, are to be inclusive, according to a statement issued ahead of the meeting by the National Committee of Rally and Development (CNRD).

In attendance are delegates from political parties, civil society, diplomats, religious leaders and representatives of mining companies.

Each sector will be given two hours to articulate their views.

All of the country's main political parties announced their willingness earlier to participate, including Conde's Rally of the Guinean People (RPG) party, which confirmed its attendance after a meeting Monday.

The RPG’s administrative secretary, Lansana Komara, told reporters Monday that after consultation with all of the party structures, members agreed to the party being represented at this week's consultation.

“The RPG is a party of dialogue. We have always favored dialogue. We are for consultation, for negotiation, and we especially want to see the release of our President, Alpha Conde,” he said.

A draft charter on the transition will be drawn up at the end of the consultation, according to the military.

Opposition leader Cellou Dalein Diallo told local media that the consultation was a good gesture.

Diallo is hoping the junta will set up a transitional government and hold elections as soon as possible “to steer the country back to constitutional order.”

Colonel Mamadi Doumbouya, the leader of the military takeover, has accused Conde of personalizing politics and not doing enough to create economic and social pathways for the population.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) met with the junta last week over the situation in Guinea.

Like the African Union, ECOWAS condemned the military takeover and suspended the country from the bloc.

Conde was deposed and detained on Sept. 5 by soldiers led by Doumbouya, who promised a “peaceful” transition and the formation of a government of national unity.

On Saturday, the junta banned processions in support of the coup and introduced a toll-free line for citizens to report any excesses of security forces.