By Kemo Cham
Guinea will benefit from the United States government’s support through its African Democratic and Political Transitions (ADAPT) initiative, the State Department announced on Wednesday.
Department Spokesperson Matthew Miller said the gesture is meant to support the people of Guinea in their transition to democratic governance.
Guinea has been under military rule since September 2021, and it is set to conduct elections and ultimately transfer power to a civilian administration by January 1, 2025, according to a roadmap agreed with the regional Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
At the 2022 U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, President Joe Biden announced the United States would increase political and technical support for democratic transitions through the new ADAPT initiative.
According to Miller, ADAPT resources will provide technical assistance for ongoing efforts to draft a new constitution and prepare for free and fair elections in Guinea, adding that it will also help to lay the groundwork for more effective and inclusive democratic institutions.
“There is consistent and strong popular support for democracy across Africa, and the promotion of democratic principles and practices are fundamental to the African Union’s Agenda 2063,” the State Department spokesman said.
He added: “The United States is committed to surging support to regional bodies, transition governments, democratic and inclusive political movements, and civil society to advance shared democratic goals.”
When ADAPT was unveiled back in December, it was presented as a demonstration of the Biden-Haris Administration’s commitment to engage with complex political transitions on the continent through supporting governments and civil society. The plan was to invest US75 million over a three year period to counter “democratic backsliding”, coming at the backdrop of a wave of military takeovers that has seen a total of seven countries in the region slide under undemocratic rule, including Mali, Burkina Faso, Chad, Niger, Gabo and Sudan.
According to the US government, the ADAPT initiative will be expanded to other countries as transition governments take concrete and timely steps to transition to democratic governance.