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West African Military Coups: Researchers Hesitant to Discuss Underlying Causes

During a group interview with Parliamentary Journalists in Sierra Leone on May 21st, 2024, the Director of Coordination at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College in Kaduna, Nigeria, Al-Hassan Muhammed Grema, discussed the institution's mission in Sierra Leone. The purpose of their mission is to examine the impact of good governance on military efficiency.

The interview followed a presentation to Student Officers of Course 46 at the Armed Forces Command and Staff College Jaji, Kaduna, Nigeria. The discussion, held at Committee Room No. 1, Parliament Building Sierra Leone, focused on the theme "Leveraging Good Governance for Security."

The Director emphasized the importance of the theme due to the political and governance challenges faced by West Africa. He stated that their tour aims to assess how good governance influences the operational efficiency of the security services and to engage with various stakeholders in Sierra Leone to chart a way forward for Africa.

While the team is still conducting research, the Director revealed that they have not yet identified the motivating factors leading military officers to overthrow civilian governments in West Africa. He also did not comment on the assertion that an erosion in democracy triggers military coups.

Regarding the role of the military in African democracies, the Director emphasized that the military is subservient to civil authority and will always remain so. He confirmed that the findings of their research will be shared upon completion of their mission.

In conclusion, the Director expressed confidence that democracy in Sierra Leone will continue to thrive and stated that he holds no fear of a regression into military rule.


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