Guinea’s interim leader Sekouba Konate sacked the heads of the airforce and navy in a purge of the West African country’s military leadership.
Konate replaced the head of the armed forces on Wednesday in what observers said was an attempt to reign in military elements allied to injured and sidelined former junta leader Captain Moussa Dadis Camara.
“Colonel Naby Ibrahima Soumah is named head of the airforce replacing Colonel Mamady Mara. Lieutenant Colonel Lamine Toure is named head of the national navy replacing Colonel Mohamed Camara,” said a presidential spokesman.
Konate took over leadership of Guinea, the world’s top bauxite exporting nation, in December after Camara was shot in the head by a would-be assassin and flown abroad for medical treatment. Camara is convalescing in Burkina Faso.
Camara had drawn widespread international condemnation after Guinean security forces killed at least 150 protesters and raped scores of women at an opposition rally in September, and further ired dissenters by stepping back from a promise to remove himself as an election candidate.
Konate has won some support from the United States and other powers for appointing a civilian prime minister, promising an election in June, and making efforts to improve army discipline.
A spokesperson for Konate said the head of the armed forces Colonel Oumar Sanoh — a perceived ally of Camara — was sacked and replaced by Colonel Nouhou Thiam.
Pic: Guinea Junta leader- Sekouba Konate