Coup d’état in Guinea – Are we in a New Era of Military Dictatorships in Africa?

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Coup d’état in Guinea – Are we in a New Era of Military Dictatorships in Africa?

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September 9th, 2021, at 10 AM – 11 AM Washington D. C Time via ZOOM

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1. Context

Military takeovers in Africa are becoming unprecedented after the euphoria and embrace of democracy in the early 90s. Since the years of independence, Africa has experienced more than 200 military coups, counting both successful and failed coup attempts. The political and economic conditions prevailing in different African countries and the foreign influences at work have all played a part in fuelling conflicts and coups in the region. The destabilizing factors have been many and varied, depending on the national context: warring factions seeking to gain power in the aftermath of independence; established and stable states burdened by poor quality of governance and by corrupt officials; autocratic regimes repressing any form of opposition but with socio-political discontent and instability seething below the surface.

Guinea has not been an exception. After many decades of authoritarian rule, Alpha Condé was the country’s first democratically elected leader. During his time in office, Guinea used its rich natural resources to improve the economy, but the bulk of the country’s population has not felt its effects. In 2020, Condé changed the constitution by referendum to allow himself to secure a third term, but with controversy. During his rule, Condé cracked down on protests as well as opposition candidates, some of whom were retained in prison, while the government struggled to contain price increases in basic commodities. In August 2021, in an attempt to balance the budget, Guinea announced tax hikes while slashing spending on the police and the military, but increased funding for the office of the President and National Assembly. The coup began in the morning of September 5, 2021, when the Republic of Guinea Armed Forces surrounded Sekhoutoureah Presidential Palace and cordoned off the wider government district.

2. Objectives of the Dialogue

The objective of this panel is to analyse the military takeover in Guinea and its impact on democracy and governance in West Africa and the continent as a whole.

3. Who should participate?

This event is open to experts in peace and security, governance and democracy, stakeholders and the general public across Africa and beyond.

4. Expected Output

Evidenced-based policy recommendations that could inform actions of national, regional and international stakeholders especially ECOWAS and the AU’s Africa Peace Security Architecture.


Idayat Hassan - Director, Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD)

Idayat Hassan is Director of the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), an Abuja-based Think-Tank with focus on deepening democracy and development in West Africa. Hassan was formerly the Principal Programme Officer and Team Leader for Democratic Governance unit at the organization. Prior to joining the CDD, Hassan was a Deputy Regional Coordinator with the Movement Against Corruption, a movement that seeks to eradicate corruption and poverty in Nigeria. A lawyer by profession, and a Development Expert, she has held Fellowships in several universities across Europe and America. Her core interest in Development work spans Democracy, Accountability, Peace and Security, and and transitional justice in West Africa.

Jeffrey Smith - Executive Director, Vanguard Africa

Jeffrey Smith, Executive Director - has over a decade of experience in human rights advocacy, pro-democracy and research work on Africa, including at Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, Freedom House, National Endowment for Democracy, Institute for Democratic Alternatives in South Africa, and UNESCO. Mr. Smith has planned and conducted human rights and civil society assessment missions to several African countries and has published extensively on US-Africa policy and human rights issues for major international publications. He frequently appears in media outlets as an expert commentator, including on CNN, NPR, MSNBC and the BBC.

Franklin Cudjoe - President and Chief Executive Officer, IMANI Center for Policy and Education, Ghana

Franklin is the Founding President and Chief Executive Officer of IMANI Centre for Policy and Education, a think tank of global repute dedicated to the promotion of the institutions of a free society across Africa. IMANI has been consistently ranked among the top 5 most influential think tanks in sub- Saharan Africa and among the top 100 worldwide.

In 2010 Franklin was consulted by the U. K’s Prime Minister’s office on how to make effective use of British aid in Africa. Franklin has hosted and shared panels with former Malaysian Deputy Prime Minster, Anwar Ibrahim, Swiss President, Doris Leuthard, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and debated former Tanzanian President, Benjamin Mkapa when he was president in 2005.


Denis Foretia - Executive Chairman, Nkafu Policy Institute

Dr Denis ForetiaDr. Foretia is Co-Chair of the Denis & Lenora Foretia Foundation and Senior Fellow at the Nkafu Policy Institute, a leading Cameroonian think tank. Along with Co-Chair Lenora Ebule, he shapes and approves strategy, advocates for the foundation, and helps set the overall direction. He is also the Chairman of Merckshire LLC, an international holding company with operations in the US and Cameroon. A surgeon by training, Foretia has always been involved in philanthropic activities and issues related to governance, international development and public policy. He is currently the President of the Association of Cameroonian Physicians in the Americas (ACPA).

Foretia recently joined the University of Tennessee Health Science Center as an Assistant Professor and Associate Director for Africa in the Global Surgery Institute. Prior to this he was a faculty in the department of surgery at Johns Hopkins University and staff acute care surgeon at Lifebridge Health. He is also an Associate in the department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He holds a Bachelor’s degree with honors in Biological Sciences from the University of Maryland Baltimore County, a Doctor of Medicine degree from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee. He also holds a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from Bloomberg School of Public Health at the Johns Hopkins University and a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the Carey School of Business also at the Johns Hopkins University.

The event is finished.


Sep 09 2021


West Central Africa Time
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM


Zoom Online
Nkafu Policy Institute


Nkafu Policy Institute
+237 654 86 72 54
[email protected]

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