Saturday, June 19, 2021

Cote d’Ivoire: Protests possible nationwide through May over electricity disruptions

Event

Protests denouncing recurrent power outages are possible nationwide at least late May. Several unions and civil society groups, including the Union Fédérale des Consommateurs de Côte d’Ivoire, denounced the issue. Prolonged outages may spur such groups to launch protests, mainly at government buildings, public squares, and major intersections in urban centers. Security forces are likely to deploy to large demonstrations; minor skirmishes are possible if police forcibly disperse gatherings.

Further disruptions to power supplies are likely in the coming days that may cause temporary business, transport, and communications disruptions.

Context

Breakdowns at the Azito plant in Abidjan, which generates about a third of the country’s electricity supplies, has resulted in power disruptions affecting the cities of Yamoussoukro, Korhogo, and Abidjan. Millions of residents were reportedly left without electricity for several days in mid-April.

Advice

Avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities. Monitor local media for updates on the situation and plan for electricity disruptions. Conserve batteries and restrict cellphone use to emergencies in case of an extended power outage. Exercise caution when driving or crossing streets if traffic signals are not functioning.

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