Former prosecutor Antoine Diome is the architect of the convictions of Karim Wade and Khalifa Sall. A dedicated soldier, he is ready to take blows and return them… Portrait of an atypical politician.
If he were a figure of Greek mythology, perhaps he would be Eunomius, one of the three daughters of Zeus and Themis, who personifies law, legislation and order. Yesterday, Antoine Félix Abdoulaye Diome, a magistrate of the Public Prosecutor’s Office and Minister of the Interior since November 2020, did he not agree, in his successive functions, to take over, in Senegal, this “minor goddess” by assuming his main tasks: “to ensure the internal stability of the State and the maintenance of public order”?
At the age of 47, the man retained a youthful and agreeable face. But make no mistake: “He looks smiling and never attacks head-on. He stabs in the back!” Comments, bitter, a lawyer who confronted him during the trial of Karim Wade and his co-accused, between 2014 and 2015. “He’s not a bad legal expert, but he had a tendency to twist the debate: he was obviously on government business,” the source adds.
Antoine Diome – “Tony”, for the most part – flees the media like the plague. He is more comfortable in court than in a meeting, says a famous Senegalese interviewer who has seen the country’s political greats parade. Many of us asked for an interview, but he always declined courteously.” Young Africa, too, broke its teeth because it was unable to make it to Dakar on time for a face-to-face meeting that he suggested. No discussion possible remotely with Antoine Diome, even by videoconference.
On March 6, 2021, it was in front of a television camera, but without a journalist to interrogate him, that he experienced his baptism of media fire, Reading in prime time a statement in which he was outraged by the riots that had just shaken the Senegalese capital and several major cities of the country. Four months earlier, Antoine Diome, who had become Home Secretary, did not go to bat in his response to supporters of opposition MP Ousmane Sonko, who was summoned by the courts on a charge of rape, which many Senegalese people see as a political trap.judicial.
Behind the convictions of Karim Wade and Khalifa Sall, the former prosecutor is now the Minister of the Interior. A dedicated soldier, he is ready to take blows and return them… Portrait of an atypical politician
“These unprecedented and unprecedented acts of provocation, with the support of identified occult forces, provoked violent demonstrations in several parts of the capital and other parts of the country,” he said, before listing these “acts of a terrorist nature” means “assaults, looting, pillaging and damage to public buildings and private property, but also to businesses owned by natural and legal persons…”
Antoine Diome, that evening, did not object to any superlative, going so far as to describe the popular discontent that flared up the country as a «conspiracy against the State» falling under an «organized insurrection». For a politician who knows the magistrate well, this «clumsy» intervention amounted to using a jerry can of gasoline to try to put out a fire: «At the hearing, the word of a prosecutor is naturally a charge. But there, he spoke as Minister of the Interior in the face of a youth who is revolting.” Read more
Source : Jeune Afrique