Former Ivory Coast leader Laurent Gbagbo may be facing a long prison sentence at the hands of the International Criminal Court, but his supporters could never be more fervent.
|ICC accused of bias. © Abreu Report|
As AllAfrica has reported a group of self-described pan-Africanists in Accra launched the "Free Gbagbo Campaign" over the weekend, hoping that popular support would encourage the release of their embattled leader.
Mr. Gbagbo's pan-Africanist supporters alleged that he was put on trial due to his engagement in a fervent struggle for Ivory Coast's resources, a battle which ultimately would have wrested "control and manipulation" away from the nation's former colonial master.
A supporter of Mr. Gbabo told Abreu Report that the former African leader was cooperative with French interests, but "not cooperative enough;" a lack of cooperation which prompted the European power to engage in a conspiracy against a man holding immense power over assets indispensable to the French economy.
As Abreu Report wrote this past February, diplomatic cables leaked to Wikileaks by former US Army Private Chelsea Manning disclosed that Mr. Gbagbo was a prime character in an assassination plot implicating the International Monetary Fund.
In the IMF plot, diplomatic cables revealed that Mr. Gbagbo was thought by the US government to be directly involved in a conspiracy to take out a jetliner with his own Prime Minister, an incident from which he was thought to have "profited handsomely."
Despite being suspected of conspiring to kill Prime Minister Soro, the two reconciled shortly after the attack and would go on to negotiate a rather profitable deal with the IMF.
In the same way that Mr. Gbagbo was able to reconcile his differences with a man he was suspected of plotting to kill, so perhaps may the ICC decide that a little murder conspiracy shouldn't rile anyone up; his followers would certainly hope so.