Bedie: The Sphinx Is Back.[email protected]



“We are just a few months away from the presidential election next October. I am responding to your expectations while hoping that you can mobilize on the ground to convince statutory members of the convention to ensure us a resounding victory on the evening of July 26th.

I am also counting on you to convey to all our activists my determination and my constant availability to serve, without respite, the party for our victory in the upcoming presidential election. It is this victory that will enable the youth of Côte d'Ivoire to assume full and complete responsibility in the management of public affairs. Consequently, I accept this request for candidacy as a mission of public salvation arising from a strong expectation from the grassroots; thus imposing on me the obligation to compete at this convention.

While thanking you for this expression of confidence and attention, I urge you to spread the word out there. Indeed, it is up to you to successfully complete the operation of enlisting new adults and all those of voting age who do not hold a national identity card yet, on the electoral roll. On that note, I reaffirm my commitment to work for the success and influence of our great party, while asking you to convey my thanks and greetings to members of your respective committees.” Excerpts of candidate Henri Konan Bédié's speech. (21/06/2020).

Ten years after the post-electoral crisis of 2010-2011, the October 2020 presidential election promises to be tense. The Ouattara regime has sentenced most of the significant opposition to 20 years prison in absentia. The only man standing so far is the “sphinx” of Daoukro. Never quick to speak, although full of wit, “Nzueba” keeps resurging when he is the least expected.

In his autobiography entitled “Les chemins de ma vie: entretiens avec Eric Laurent”, Henri Konan Bédié speaks of being born on a rainy day with a particular symbolic meaning: "The rain has almost always been a factor in my life. If you go to Daoukro or Yamoussoukro, people will spontaneously tell you: "Ah, the president is here, it's going to rain". There's a good chance of that happening. The last time I went to hold a cabinet meeting in Yamoussoukro, people said, "It's been a month since we had rain. If he comes, it will rain." Just as I was getting off the plane, the first drops began to fall and the rain lasted all night, to the joy of the peasants. I don't know if it makes sense, but it happens all the time. “And to conclude: " For the anecdote, when he was discovering Africa and was a general resident in Morocco, Lyautey used to say: "To govern is to rain." Is that premonitory? ». Strangely enough, days after announcing he would be running again for office at the tender age of 86, Abidjan was underwater...

Great silversmith of the “Miracle years”.

Henri Konan Bédié was recalled from Washington to Abidjan in 1966 to take charge of Economic and Financial Affairs, and for eleven years (1966 to 1977) was entrusted with the Ministry of Finance. This was the era known as the "Ivorian miracle": the prices of raw materials such as coffee and cocoa soared and were dubbed the green gold of Côte d'Ivoire. Henri Konan Bédié multiplied foreign relations on economic and financial issues, founded state-owned companies, diversified agricultural production (bananas, pineapples, rubber trees, oil palm, etc.), and undertook major projects (a second port in San Pedro, a large dam in Kossou). In Abidjan prestigious buildings such as the Hotel Ivoire rose from the ground, in addition to infrastructures such as motorways and bridges. For some, Henri Konan Bédié was the father of the "Ivorian miracle”. Humble as ever, the man himself spoke of a long period of growth, prosperity and investment, just as in other countries at the same time anywhere else.

In the coming months, a series of articles will highlight the life and times of candidate Henri Konan Bedie.

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