In Summary
  • The 15-member bloc blames his meddling for a political crisis that has hit the country ahead of presidential elections on November 24.
  • On the campaign trail over the weekend President Vaz declared he was not afraid of anyone and lampooned the Ecowas-recognised Prime Minister Aristides Gomes for asking the economic bloc to sanction him.
  • The country is now effectively being run by two governments, one under Vaz and the other under Gomes.

Luanda,

Guinea Bissau President José Mário Vaz remains defiant in the face of condemnation from the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas).

The 15-member bloc blames his meddling for a political crisis that has hit the country ahead of presidential elections on November 24.

On the campaign trail over the weekend President Vaz declared he was not afraid of anyone and lampooned the Ecowas-recognised Prime Minister Aristides Gomes for asking the economic bloc to sanction him.

Before quickly turning spiritual, he said he wanted to "develop the country" during his second term in office.

“We hand our head to Virgin Mary and to Guinea Bissau people,” he said, during a campaign rally in the capital Bissau on Sunday.

President Vaz comments appeared as a response to the Ecowas extraordinary summit of heads of state and government in Niamey, Niger which on Friday said it recognised Mr Gomes government.

ONE COUNTRY, TWO GOVERNMENTS

The President had days earlier sacked Mr Gomes' government and installed his ally in the elections Faustino Imbali as prime minister.

Mr Imbali resigned the same day after the summit gave his government 48 hours to leave office in favour of Gomes, who became Prime minister on the strength of legislative elections held on March 10, 2019.

“The authority reaffirms its full support to the prime minster Aristides Gomes and to his government and urges them to continue to carry out their duties, in particular the efforts to prepare the November 24 elections.”

President Vaz has not so far commented on Faustino Imbali resignation but the country is now effectively being run by two governments, one under Vaz and the other under Gomes.

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