Coups: Guinea-Bissau President Beefs Up Personal Security

A videograb made on February 2, 2022 shows Guinea-Bissau’s president Umaro Sissoco Embalo delivering a speech in Bissau on February 1, 2022. Guinea-Bissau’s president Umaro Sissoco Embalo said he survived heavy fire for five hours during an attempted coup which he claimed killed or injured many people in the unstable west African country

President Umaro Sissoco Embalo of Guinea-Bissau has chosen two new employees to defend his security, who began their duties on Monday, with the head of state referring to coups elsewhere in Africa.

The security postings were made immediately after coups in Niger and Gabon, both of which were carried out by government security officials.

On Friday, General Tomas Djassi was chosen head of presidential security, and General Horta Inta was made chief of staff to the president.

These two jobs have long existed in the government’s organizational structure, but have remained vacant for decades.

Djassi and Inta were sworn in Monday during a ceremony at the presidential palace, according to an AFP journalist.

Guinea-Bissau has suffered four military coups since independence in 1974, most recently in 2012.

An attempt to overthrow Embalo took place in February 2022.

“It’s true that coups d’état carried out by presidential security officers have become fashionable,” the president told reporters on Monday, while assuring that “any suspicious movement will be met with an appropriate response”.

Djassi was previously the commander of the national guard, an elite army force whose participation helped thwart the 2022 coup attempt.

Inta was the commander of Bissau’s central police station.

Embalo warned last month that Niger’s coup constituted an existential threat to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), claiming that the country’s deposed president, Mohamed Bazoum, was the only legal leader.

Written by PH

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