Guinea-Bissau’s former PM Pereira returns from exile
Guinea-Bissau’s ex-prime minister Domingos Simoes Pereira returned to his native West African state on Friday, an AFP journalist said, after fleeing the country last year following a disputed presidential election.
uinea-Bissau’s ex-prime minister Domingos Simoes Pereira returned to his native West African state on Friday, an AFP journalist said, after fleeing the country last year following a disputed presidential election.
Thousands of people lining the road from the airport in the capital Bissau cheered as Pereira made his way to his party headquarters in the city centre.
Police later fired tear gas to disperse people who had gathered outside the headquarters, according to an AFP journalist.
Pereira, a leading figure in the African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC) which led Guinea-Bissau to independence from Portugal, was prime minister from 2014 to 2015.
He then faced Umaro Sissoco Embalo in a presidential run-off vote in December 2019, which resulted in both sides claiming victory and triggered political gridlock in the poor nation of about two million people.
Pereira fled to Portugal in May, however, after the election commission declared that Embalo had won.
uinea-Bissau is notoriously unstable and has a long history of military coups.
“Those who thought I would be afraid to return to home are mistaken,” Pereira told reporters.
The PAIGC still maintains that it won the 2019 election.
The 15-nation Economic Community of West African States, which includes Guinea-Bissau, recognised Embalo as the president of the country in April, however.