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Former Ivorian President, Laurent Gbagbo Proposes Plans To Set Up New Political Party

Former president Laurent Gbagbo (C) arrives to his home village of Mama, west central Ivory Coat on June 27, 2021, ten days after his return to Abidjan following his acquittal by international justice. – Thousands of supporters gave Ivory Coast’s controversial former president Laurent Gbagbo, 76, a hero’s welcome as he made a triumphant return to his home village. The former leader returned home following his acquittal by the ICC in March on charges stemming from violence that claimed around 3,000 lives after he refused to concede electoral defeat in 2010 to current President Alassane Ouattara. (Photo by SIA KAMBOU / AFP)

 

Ivory Coast ex-president Laurent Gbagbo has proposed setting up a new political party, his Ivorian Popular Front (FPI), which is suffering deep internal divisions, said on Monday.

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Speaking at a meeting of FPI leaders, Gbagbo hit out at his former prime minister, Pascal Affi N’Guessan, who heads one of the factions, and proposed “creating a new instrument of struggle in line with our ideology and ambitions”, the party said in a statement.

68-year-old Affi N’Guessan, leads a so-called “legal” faction — a term that stems from the judicial authorities’ acknowledgement of his position as party president in 2015.

The other side is the so-called “GOR” faction — from the French words meaning “Gbagbo Or Nothing” — backed by grassroots members who fervently support the former president.

Gbagbo, who was in power from 2000-11, dramatically returned to Ivorian politics in June after being acquitted at the International Criminal Court in The Hague of crimes against humanity arising from post-election violence in 2010-2011.

During his years in prison in The Hague, a deep rift developed in the FPI, which Gbagbo founded in 1982. Many attempts to bridge the rift following Gbagbo’s return have failed, and last week the “legal” faction mounted a rearguard action after Gbagbo convened a top level meeting of the party leadership.

The faction claimed that Gbagbo, despite his status as a “founder member of the party”, was not the current president of it.

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Written by PH

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