Former Ivorian leader Gbagbo blamed for party “break-up”

The leader of the Ivorian Popular Front (FPI, opposition), Affi Nguessan, has in a note, accused Laurent Gbagbo of having…

The leader of the Ivorian Popular Front (FPI, opposition), Affi Nguessan, has in a note, accused Laurent Gbagbo of having chosen “rupture and division,” at a time when he was calling for dialogue to restore unity with the party.“At the end of a meeting with his supporters this Monday, August 9, 2021, Mr. Laurent Gbagbo announced that he had given up the inopportune and destructive battle he had been waging for seven years against the FPI and that he “will create another party with the same content,” Affi reacted.

“In response to my request for a meeting, and to my desire for dialogue with a view to the unity of the FPI, Laurent Gbagbo has chosen rupture and division,” the statutory president of the FPI, a party founded by Mr. Gbagbo added.

He feels that Mr. Gbagbo “has buried the hope” that their activists, voters and supporters had in the unity of the left and in the reconciliation of their political family.

He therefore “assumes responsibility before our compatriots and before history for the split that now marks the FPI’s history”, he said.

And yet, he said, “his visits and embraces with his former tormentors had led us to believe that he was truly the missing link in the national reconciliation process and that he would work towards the unity of our party.

“This decision, dictated essentially by the thirst for power and the desire for revenge, constitutes a challenge to our strength of character, our ideological convictions and our political maturity,” he added. 

“For my part, I assure the militants and sympathizers of the FPI, the national and international opinion of my firm determination to pursue my mission for the rebirth of the party with a view to regaining power in 2025,” Mr. Affi went on. 

The FPI president assures that he will continue to fight for the values of democracy and progress that they once shared, concluding his remarks with the slogan: “Chin up, the struggle goes on!”

Mr. Gbagbo and members of the FPI, including Simone Ehivet, decided on Monday to create a “new instrument of struggle” at the end of a central committee meeting at the Palace of Culture in Abidjan.

According to activists who took part in the central committee meeting, this decision is made because Mr. Affi keeps “clinging on” to the party.

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