Gantry 5


Bulletin No44 mars 2024  Triumphant election, with nuances
Bassirou Domaye Faye was triumphantly elected president of the Republic of Senegal. He obtained 54.28% against 35.79% for his main rival, Amadou Ba, prime minister of outgoing President Macky Sall.
The Senegalese have clearly sent a clear message to the former president and his party, the Alliance Pour la République (APR), probably because of the high cost of living and rampant corruption within the state. Young people in particular were very supportive of PASTEF (African Patriots of Senegal for Work, Ethics and Fraternity) and its leader, who was unable to present himself, Ousmane Sonko.
However, the importance of Faye's success should not be overstated. Participation in this presidential election was 61.6%, compared to 66.27% in 2019, during the previous elections, where Macky Sall was re-elected in the first round with 58.26% of those cast. It is clear that a significant number of Senegalese have decided not to choose between Macky Sall's heir and Ousmane Sonko's foal.
A double talk
One of the key measures proposed by the new president during his campaign is the end of the CFA franc. However, during his first speech as president, the one whom Le Figaro describes as "  Admirer of  former American President Barack Obama  and of the South African hero of the anti-apartheid struggle Nelson Mandela  ", which certainly does not make him a great revolutionary, above all wanted to reassure the imperialists. If he presented himself as the man of rupture, of the reestablishment of a national sovereignty sold abroad, and of a “  left pan-Africanism  ”, he also worked to reassure foreign partners who closely followed the election. Although TV5 Monde warns that "  His election could herald a profound systemic challenge  ", his declaration was especially noted for this passage: "  Senegal will remain the friendly country and the safe and reliable ally of any partner who commits with us in virtuous, respectful and mutually productive cooperation  .
During a televised speech on Wednesday April 3, President Faye was in the same register. If he announced: “  The exploitation of our natural resources, which, according to the Constitution, belong to the people, will be the subject of particular attention on the part of my government. I will carry out the disclosure of the beneficial ownership of extractive companies and an audit of the mining, oil and gas sector.  ", he then wanted to reassure the capitalists with these words: " Investors welcome in Senegal [...] The rights of investors will always be protected, as will the interests of the State and the people.  ". Squaring the circle or opening towards the imperialists?
Congratulations from the Western imperialists
What is certain is that the first leaders to congratulate Faye on her election were those of Western imperialist countries, before most African leaders, and first of all the first of them, Biden. The US President on Wednesday congratulated Faye and “  the Senegalese people, who have demonstrated that the right to vote, and the fact that this vote is taken into account, remains the threshold of freedom in democracy  ”. A direct attack against the Sahel States, including Niger, which has just sent home the US soldiers who are on its soil.
Macron sent a   message on More generally, in France, as in other Western imperialist countries, this election was well received. Our media describes Bassirou Domaye Faye as  an “anti-system opponent ”, which does not seem to scare France 24 or TV5 Monde. A column in Le Monde, the official newspaper of the French capitalist state, even hailed an invigorating moment for “  democracy  ”, contrasting the election of Bassirou Domaye Faye with the seizure of power in other African countries. West by the military. The message is clear: “  Long live electoral pseudo-democracy!” Down with violent anti-colonialist power grabs!  ". Obviously, knowing Le Monde , we suspect that implicitly, the “  democratic  ” election did not bring to power an opponent of French imperialism as virulent as Ibrahim Traoré, the leader of Burkina, who claims to Sankara, and sometimes Gramsci or Lenin. In another article, the same newspaper tells us that "  we welcome today at the Elysée a vote touted as an example of democratic vitality, in a region where, for three years, one coup d'état has followed one another - in Mali , in Burkina Faso, in Guinea, in Niger – forcing French soldiers to leave the Sahel.  ".
Liberator or reactionary?
In an article several months ago, we highlighted the proximity of Ousmane Sonko, Faye's mentor, who became prime minister, with the armed fascist Islamist groups who are battling the armies of Mali and Burkina. We know that, behind these groups, we find the invisible hand of Uncle Sam. The fundamentalist religious side of the two men is not a sign of the future emancipation of the Senegalese people either. Faye has two wives, which cannot be a sign of female liberation in Senegal. Religious reactionaries cannot be vectors of national liberation or the overthrow of capitalist oppression
Furthermore, the African Union observation mission welcomed in a press release “the democratic maturity of the Senegalese people and the overall peaceful climate of the presidential election”. We know that the AU is not really the enemy of the imperialist powers and not really the friend of the three countries of the AES, the Alliance of Sahel States.
But it is especially with regard to ECOWAS that President Faye's declarations are likely to most worry those who saw him as a “  liberator  ”.
Faye and ECOWAS
Let us recall that ECOWAS, the Economic Community of West African States, is an organization of States totally controlled by French leaders, who, we remember, had tried to push these same States to overthrow by force. forces the military regime of Niger.
Recently, we talked about it, Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso created the AES (Alliance of Sahel States) which aims to be an area of ​​anti-colonial cooperation, the opposite of what ECOWAS is.
However, now the new Senegalese president is expressing his desire to keep the country within this regional community. This position was affirmed during his electoral campaign, where he underlined his commitment to bringing these countries back within ECOWAS. In one of the new president's interventions, he called for consolidating the achievements of ECOWAS integration while making necessary adjustments. Senegal's position is supported by Guinea, a state also led by the military, but less committed to decolonization than the three in the AES. Guinea shares the same aspirations for a   stronger ECOWAS . Guinean Prime Minister, Amadou Oury Bâ, expressed confidence in the ability of the two countries to work together to strengthen neighborhood relations and revitalize ECOWAS as an instrument of peace, stability and economic progress in the western region. -African. One would think Mélenchon or Roussel calling for “Social Europe”. Like the EU, ECOWAS cannot be reformed; it is a tool at the service of multinationals, built by them and which will not change in nature.
Finally, during his campaign, speaking of the AES countries, Bassou Domaye Faye declared, on March 23: “  I will work as President of the Republic as best as I can to bring them back within ECOWAS  ". This means that it is in opposition to the new Alliance of Sahel States, which displays ideas incompatible with those of the ECOWAS and its role as policeman for the West.
In conclusion
In a video, a Senegalese opponent of the new elected official questioned President Faye's first trip abroad. “  Either he will go to a Western country to pledge allegiance, or to one of the three AES countries to carry a message from Westerners.  ". We cannot validate this alternative, even if it reveals the concerns of those who voted for Faye without illusion, because he was the least bad of the candidates.
However, you have to be lucid. The first words of the president-elect are not really reassuring. The opposition, strongly theorized by Western propaganda, between his “democratic” election and the putschists” of the Sahel does not seem to bother him.
We tell all those who rejoiced at the election that the Bourgeoisie rarely lets its enemies be elected.
For the Communist Revolutionary Party, there has been no revolution in Senegal, nor even, for the moment, a takeover of power by the people or the workers.
The old socialist Bebel said “  When the Bourgeoisie congratulates me, I wonder what stupidity I could have done.  ". And when it’s Biden and Macron?
There is room to rebuild a revolutionary party in this country for those who want change and who want to act to impose it.