The president of Guinea-Bissau, Umaro Sissoco Embaló, has reacted to reports of coup attempt in the nation.
He noted that the gunfire reported was not just a coup but an attempt to kill him.
“It wasn’t just a coup,” he said. “It was an attempt to kill the president, the prime minister and the entire cabinet.”
“Armed attackers tried to enter the building but were repelled. They were well prepared and organized and could be related to people involved in drug trafficking,” he added.
The president’s reaction came hours after soldiers fired heavy gunfire near a government compound where the president had been chairing a cabinet meeting.
There have been at least six coup attempts in African countries since 2020, raising concerns democracy was under threat in the region.
Regional bodies and the United Nations have issued statements condemning the attack by the military in Guinea-Bissau.
“ECOWAS is following with great concern the evolution of the situation in Guinea-Bissau … where military gunfire is taking place around the Government Palace,” the regional body said in a Tuesday statement.
Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated Embalo for surviving the coup attempt in his country.
The Nigerian leader stated this in statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, on Wednesday in Abuja.
Buhari, who spoke with the Guinea-Bissau leader shortly after he survived the military attempt to overthrow his government, commended the loyal troops in Guinea Bissau for the show of patriotism leading to their “spectacular victory” over the disloyal elements of the military.
The president condemned the attempt to subvert the established constitutional order in Guinea-Bissau and extended the goodwill and support of the government and people of Nigeria to the Guinea-Bissauans and the Embalo administration.
“I look forward to working with you to strengthen the existing bilateral ties between our sisterly nations, and the defence and promotion of democracy and its values throughout the sub region, and the entire continent,” Buhari told Embalo.
In the course of the conversation, Embalo assured Buhari that the situation had been brought under control and that “all is well, and normalcy fully restored.”
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