Guinea-Bissau President, Umaro Sissoco Embalo has appointed two new officials to protect his security, ruling out any coup against his government.
The security appointments come after recent coups in Niger and Gabon, both carried out by the military.
Last month, Embalo warned that Niger’s coup presented an existential threat to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), saying the deposed Nigerien president Mohamed Bazoum was the country’s legitimate leader.
On Monday, September 4, General Tomas Djassi assumed office as head of presidential security, while General Horta Inta started work as chief of staff for the president on Friday.
Djassi and Inta were sworn in Monday during a ceremony at the presidential palace, according to AFP.
“It’s true that coups d’état carried out by presidential security officers have become fashionable,” Embalo told reporters on Monday, while assuring that “any suspicious movement will be met with an appropriate response”.
These two positions have long existed in the government’s organisational structure but have not been filled for several decades.
Guinea-Bissau has suffered four military coups since independence in 1974, most recently in 2012.
An attempt to overthrow Embalo took place in February 2022.
Before his new appointment, Djassi was the head of the national guard, an elite unit of the army whose intervention helped stall the 2022 coup attempt while Inta was head of the central police station in Bissau.