Armed ViolenceNews

CAR President Visits Army At War Front To Boost Their Morale

Central African head of state, President Faustin Archange Touadera, Tuesday night paid a courtesy call on the troops of the national army fighting a coalition of rebels bent on pushing him out of power before national legislative and presidential elections due December 27, 2020.

The visit was intended for the president to go to the war front in Boali where Russian and Rwandan mercenaries are manning the operations against the rebels but President Touadera did not go to the war front.

Accompanied by elements of his immediate security, the head of state arrived PK26 on the road to Boali around 2 am this morning with the intention of giving his national army moral support in the fight against rebels.

However, on arrival at PK26 where elements of the Forces Armees Centralafrique (FACA) were supposed to be based, he only found Russian and Rwandan mercenaries in the locality of Boali which has since been deserted by the inhabitants following violent clashes in the area.

“Where were the soldiers of the national army who were at PK26 but had been told to return to Boali and give a helping hand to the Russian and Rwandan mercenaries?” an eyewitness told HumAngle by phone this morning.

“By 5 am this morning, the Chief of Army Staff, General Mamadou who had given the instructions for the soldiers of the national army to go and help the Russian and Rwandans discovered that all his troops had deserted by motor bikes and fled back to Bangui the national capital.”

“Some had to commandeer commercial vehicles from their owners in order to escape to Bangui. As the soldiers who were expected to protect the populations were seen fleeing, the inhabitants of PK13 and PK14 in panic also took to their heels, some fleeing into the bushes.”

 The Russian government had on Tuesday announced that it had dispatched 300 soldiers to the Central African Republic to support its army in the fight against rebel combatants.

“We are finished. With our national army disintegrating in the face of the rebels, one is bound to think the elections may not be held as planned on December 27, 2020,” a journalist in Bangui who chose not to be named told HumAngle by phone this morning.

“And without the elections, there is bound to be chaos at a higher level than obtains now. Should Bozize return to Bangui, there would certainly be another round of revenge slaughters between the anti-Balaka and Seleka supporters as happened when Djotodia was overthrown.” 

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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