Heavy gunfire erupted on Sunday in Conakry, Guinea outside of the presidential palace. Soon after, an Army Special Forces Colonel and his troops seized control of the national television to announce that President Alpha Conde’s government had been dissolved.

Lieutenant Colonel Mamady Doumbouya, a former French Foreign Legion officer and the commander of the special forces unit, appeared on state television with the national flag draped across his shoulders. He said that “poverty and endemic corruption” had driven his forces to remove Conde from office. He added that “the duty of a soldier is to save the country.” 

“We are no longer going to entrust politics to one man, we are going to entrust politics to the people,” Doumbouya said. “Guinea is beautiful. We don’t need to rape Guinea anymore, we just need to make love to her.”

“If you see the state of our roads, if you see the state of our hospitals, you realize that after 72 years, it’s time to wake up,” Doumbouya added. “We have to wake up.”

Calling themselves the National Committee for Reconciliation and Development, the military coup leaders said the constitution had been dissolved and that there will be consultations to create a new, more inclusive one.


A Troubled Country

Guinea is the world’s leading producer of bauxite, which is used to make aluminum; it is also rich in gold. Nevertheless, due to the mismanagement and corruption, the mineral-rich country is one of the poorest in the world.

News of the coup sent the European market prices of aluminum skyrocketing to a 10-year high.