Since yesterday the rumour that the former president, Laurent Gbagbo received a diplomatic passport from Alassane Ouattara has been circulating. And yet, Laurent Gbagbo has not received any Ivorian passport. There has been a denial by his lawyer Maître Habiba Touré.
Former President Laurent Gbagbo has not received any passport as announced by our colleagues in Africa Intelligence. In its edition of 13 November 2020, Africa Intelligence revealed that the Ivorian head of state Alassane Ouattara had recorded the delivery of a diplomatic passport to his predecessor under house arrest in Brussels, Belgium after his acquittal by the International Criminal Court.
“A few days after his re-election, Alassane Ouattara has just recorded the delivery of a diplomatic passport to Laurent Gbagbo, paving the way for the former Ivorian to return to Côte d’Ivoire after 9 years of absence. In July 2020, Laurent Gbagbo applied for a diplomatic passport followed by another application for an ordinary passport. But without success. The former Ivorian President, acquitted by the International Criminal Court ICC since January 2019, thus expressed his desire to return to Côte d’Ivoire, his country. According to his lawyer, the non-issuance of the passport to his client is a voluntary refusal by the Ivorian authorities with the aim of preventing him from returning to his country. “Obviously … Certainly the fierce will to prevent his return for the presidential elections”.
But as we told you, if the scenario of the passport handover does exist, it is not for the moment because the former president’s entourage says they are not aware of such a decision.
No passport has been given to President Gbagbo. We are still waiting. For more than 4 months nowHabiba Touré – Laurent Gbagbo’s lawyer
According to the scenario Laurent Gbagbo explains a source close to the power, would be given a diplomatic passport in the coming days. The steps could be launched very soon on the occasion of the accreditation of envoys of the Ivorian government.
It should be noted, however, that a political treatment will have to be given to the case known as the “robbery” of the Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO) which still weighs on Laurent Gbagbo.