AFRICA/IVORY COAST - Call for dialogue addressed to the two main leaders of the country by the Episcopate

Saturday, 21 November 2020 politics   bishops  

Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - "We deplore the lack of objectivity in the interpretation of our Basic Law. Therefore, we encourage the two main leaders in the current political life of our country, Presidents Alassane Ouattara and Henri Konan Bédié, to continue and intensify, on clear bases, the dialogues that they themselves have begun to achieve national harmony", say the Bishops of the Ivory Coast, where the socio-political situation remains tense after the vote on October 31st (see Fides, 3/11/2020).
In their message entitled "Promoting peace through respect for law and freedoms" published on November 20 at the end of their Permanent Council, held from November 18 to 19, the Bishops expressed the hope "that dialogue will take into account the release of all political prisoners in order to facilitate the rapid return of all exiles, including President Laurent Gbagbo, so that they can take their place in the reconciliation process underway in the country".
The Bishops strongly recommend that the political class take into account the promotion of individual rights and freedoms, fair justice and the culture of encounter.
The Bishops of the Ivory Coast believe it is their duty to devote their energies to promoting this universal good which is peace, recalling that "peace is just an empty word, if it is not based on an order founded on truth, if it is not built according to justice, charity and freedom".
The Bishops hope their appeal reaches all political leaders and fellow citizens, as well as people of good will, concerned about the good of every man and woman as well as the fate of Ivorian society.
The Permanent Council of Catholic Bishops of the Ivory Coast held from November 18 to 19, in addition to examining the socio-political situation of the country, discussed the preparation of the 117th Plenary Assembly scheduled to take place at the Jean Paul 1er de Kodjoboué Center in Bonoua (Sud-Comoé region) in diocese of Grand-Bassam, from 18 to 24 January 2021, which coincides with the solemn Mass to celebrate 125 years of evangelization in the Ivory Coast. (S.S.) (Agenzia Fides, 21/11/2020)