The visit of Antonio Guterres is an opportunity for Central Africans to express a number of grievances. Thursday, October 26, the UN Secretary-General has increased meetings, with African ambassadors, with political parties, civil society or religious leaders. He also met President Touadéra again.
To religious leaders, Antonio Guterres spoke of peace and reconciliation. But the Catholic, Protestant and Muslim dignitaries have made themselves the mouthpieces of their flock. With an essential concern: security.
“We asked the secretary-general,” said Rev. Dr. Nicolas Guérékoyame-Gbangou, of the religious platform, ” that the Central African armed forces will be redeployed rapidly throughout the territory and that the embargo [on weapons] be resolved quickly enough to enable the Central African State to provide the means to conduct operations for our Central African armed forces.”
This Friday, the Secretary-General is expected at PK5. The desire for a return of security, as everywhere, is a permanent hope. But one of the youth representatives of this neighborhood, Moussa Ibrahim Mamadou, hopes to submit another grievance. ” For 50 years we have only one technical institution, one university. The illiteracy rate is 60% in CAR, so if the Minusca can put a special emphasis on education, protect spaces for children to go to school … Today, out of sixteen prefectures of the Central African Republic, thirteen are under the control of armed groups. What will be the future of these young people in these communities? He worries.
Dialogue with armed groups always privileged
Antonio Guterres was also once again received by President Faustin-Archange Touadéra to talk about the DDR (Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration) process. Despite continued violence on the ground, the government, along with the United Nations and African partners, want to include armed groups in the peace process.
Since coming to power, Faustin-Archange Touadéra makes it a point of honor to discuss with armed groups. In September, during a reorganization, he even incorporated several representatives to the government. ” The dialogue with the armed groups is at the center of our strategies, and this is associated with the important political actions of openness to encourage the involvement of all the sons and daughters of our country in this vital process of ending the crisis and consolidating peace, “said the head of state.
Antonio Guterres appealed to the armed groups to disarm and stop the violence. The UN Secretary-General has also renewed his support for the African Peace Initiative launched by the African Union, the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) and the countries of the region in particular.
Initiative on the same line of dialogue with armed groups, but struggling to get started. “If we have the money, we will go and meet all the armed groups on the ground to tell them that it is time to stop the violence,” said Adolphe Nahayo, ECCAS representative in Bangui. They have a framework of claims, witnesses, if I may say so, vis-à-vis the government, and we hope that maybe six months from now we can come to an agreement. ”
“We know that they will set the bar high, but we are determined to go all the way,” says Nahayo.