Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

13 January 2014

Central African Republic: CAR Says Goodbye to Michel Djotodia, and About Time Too

The situation remains volatile in the Central African Republic as clashes continue in the capital, Bangui. The Red Cross says it found 11 bodies ... ( Resource: Central African Republic Remains Volatile, Aid Running Low

analysis

Africa in general, and the Central African Republic in particular, has seen more than its fair share of terrible leaders. But even by these low, low standards, newly-exiled Michel Djotodia did spectacularly badly in his nine months in office. He will not be missed.

Well that didn't last long. Michel Djotodia, the man who took over the presidency of the Central African Republic in a coup last year, has resigned after just nine months and gone into exile in Benin - a humiliating exit for a man who had dreamed of power his whole life, and came into office promising to "consolidate national unity and ensure the well-being of the Central African people". He managed nothing of the sort; instead, he effectively eviscerated what little authority the central government possessed, and plunged his country into political and humanitarian crisis.

His was an abrupt entry onto the national stage in March last year, catching even veteran CAR-watchers by surprise as he had not been part of the main rebel leadership for a number of years. Instead, however, he'd been sharpening his leadership dreams in Darfur, where he'd been recruiting Chadian mercenaries to his cause.

"Hearing the stories of...

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