Burkina Faso Democratization

Burkina Faso Democratization and Privatization

Africa

From 1991: democratization and privatization

Political and economic restructuring were conditions imposed on Burkina Faso from outside.

At the Franco-African summit in La Baule in June 1990, French President François Mitterrand made development aid dependent on progress in the democratization of the recipient countries. In the wake of a global democracy movement (wind of change) and pressure from civil society, a new constitution was drawn up in Burkina Faso and adopted by referendum on June 11, 1991. Parties formed. Blaise Compaoré left the military and founded the ODP-MT (Organization pour la démocratie populaire – Mouvement du travail). The demand of the newly formed opposition parties for a national conference to organize the upcoming elections went unheeded by the military government. The conflict shifted to the streets. Brutal brawls and arson created an unbearable climate of insecurity for members of the opposition. Opposition parties called for a boycott of the 1991 presidential election. They rated it as their success that around 3/4 of all citizens eligible to vote stayed away from the polls despite massive propaganda. Blaise Compaoré, who prevented the candidacy of opposing candidates, received about 80% of the remaining votes and became the first President of the IV Republic. Demonstrating opponents of the regime, especially schoolchildren, raged on the streets and were beaten down. Blaise Compaoré faced his first major crisis as “elected” president. professor that about 3/4 of all citizens entitled to vote stayed away from the polls despite massive propaganda. Blaise Compaoré, who prevented the candidacy of opposing candidates, received about 80% of the remaining votes and became the first President of the IV Republic. Demonstrating opponents of the regime, especially schoolchildren, raged in the street and were beaten down. Blaise Compaoré faced his first major crisis as “elected” president. professor that about 3/4 of all citizens entitled to vote stayed away from the polls despite massive propaganda. Blaise Compaoré, who prevented the candidacy of opposing candidates, received about 80% of the remaining votes and became the first President of the IV Republic. Demonstrating opponents of the regime, especially schoolchildren, raged in the street and were beaten down. Blaise Compaoré faced his first major crisis as “elected” president. professor President survive. professor President survive. professor Oumarou Clément Ouedraogo was murdered by the military on a motorcycle on December 9, 1991 in the street with a hand grenade and a submachine gun. He was Minister of Education under Sankara and later General Secretary of the ODP-MT and thus No. 2 on the Populaire Front after Compaoré. His criticism of Compaoré’s pursuit of sole rule put him out of favor, whereupon he founded his own party, the PTB (Parti des Travailleurs du Burkina). Whether he knew too much as a close confidante of Compaoré or whether he dared to shake his throne too much – there is still speculation about the background to his murder.

In the parliamentary elections, the ODP-MT received a 2/3 majority.

In the years that followed, Blaise Compaoré stabilized his power through gifts of money to small parties, the press and trade unions, as well as violent threats and intimidation. Opposition parties – such as the CNPP-PSD under the leadership of Moussa Boly – merged with the ODP-MP in February 1996 to form the CDP (Congrès pour la Démocratie et le Progrès), which in 1997 won 101 out of 110 seats.

The World Bank, the World Trade Organization and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) imposed a structural adjustment program (PAS – program d’ajustement structure) on the heavily indebted Burkina Faso, according to which state-owned companies were to be privatized, officials to be dismissed and social benefits to be restricted. The government accepted the World Bank’s requirements and received new loans. Intransparent procurement practices in privatizations further led to the growth of a rich, government-favored upper class.

1987-1991: Front Populaire

After the murder of President Tomas Sankara and numerous supporters, a new “Popular Front” accused Sankara of autocracy and deviating from the right revolutionary path and initiated a phase of “ rectification ”.

The Front Populaire, of which around 30 Blaise Compaoré loyalists belonged, abolished the CNR, dissolved parliament and dismissed the 30 provincial heads (Haut-Commissaires). The CDR were dissolved and replaced by the CR (Comités révolutionnaires), which had been brought into line with the Compaoré camp. Although the omens remained revolutionary, Compaoré sought support from conservative circles. He no longer opposed the reinstatement of 1,200 teachers who were dismissed because of strikes under Sankara, as he could use them as willing henchmen to consolidate his power. Liberalism and capitalism revived, at the same time mass events were staged based on the Stalinist model. The announced straightening of the revolution soon turned into the restoration of conservative and neocolonial power structures in Burkina Faso. According to commit4fitness, rigid measures – including not taking on debt – were withdrawn.

Shortly after the massacre of thousands of students in Beijing in 1989, Compaoré was the first head of state in the world to return to isolated China. On his return, Henri Zongo and Jean Baptiste Lingani, who, along with Sankara and Compaoré, were among the four historical leaders of the revolution, were shot dead on September 18, 1989 for an alleged attempted coup on September 18, 1989 and thus silenced. Compaoré secured sole rule.

Burkina Faso Democratization