Ban Ki-moon, Secretary General of the United Nations has said in a statement that his office was concerned about the tense political situation in Guinea-Bissau, following the protests that were sparked off after the appointment of a new Prime Minister.
The statement further reiterated Ki-moon’s position of dialogue by stakeholders as the best way out, whiles calling for calm and restraint in the face of the tensions. ‘‘He urges all political stakeholders and their supporters to act responsibly, refrain from violence and avoid an escalation of the situation by settling their concerns through dialogue,’‘ it said.
The protests started when President Mario Vaz named Baciro Dja as new Prime minister of the country last Thursday evening. A decision that sparked protests by members of the ruling party and opposition around the presidential palace.
According to reports by AFP, hundreds of supporters of the ruling African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC) protested against Dja’s appointment by throwing stones at security forces around the presidential palace and some burning tyres on the road.
The UN Chief has maintained that the continued political crisis in Guinea-Bissau was gravely affecting the functioning of the country’s institutions and undermining prospects for socio-economic development.
He singled out the country’s armed forces for what he said was their professionalism in the face of the crisis.
‘‘The Secretary-General welcomes the professionalism of the national armed forces in the fulfilment of their duties and urges them to continue to act responsibly,’‘ the statement concluded.