Batista Tagme Na Waie

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This name uses Portuguese naming customs: the first or maternal family name is Tagme and the second or paternal family name is Na Waie.

General Batista Tagme Na Waie, also transliterated as Batista Tagme Na Wai (1949 – March 1, 2009), was chief of staff of the army of Guinea-Bissau until his assassination in 2009.

Early life[edit]

Na Waie was born in Catió. A participant in the junta that overthrew João Bernardo Vieira in the 1990s and a veteran of the Guinea-Bissau War of Independence,[1] Na Waie was a member of the Balanta ethnic group.[2] He had been appointed chief of staff as a result of the October 2004 murder of his predecessor, Verissimo Correia Seabra; IRIN has described him as a "consensus figure put forward by the military establishment which the government felt forced to accept".[1]

Political tension[edit]

A "bitter rival" of Vieira,[3] both before the junta (having survived Vieira's purges of the Guinea-Bissau military in the 1980s)[2] and after Vieira's return to power, Na Waie reported surviving an assassination attempt in January 2009, when a militia assigned to the presidential palace opened fire on his staff car; the militia denied that this had been an assassination attempt.[4][5]

Death[edit]

On March 1, 2009, Na Waie was killed by an explosion in the headquarters of the Guinea-Bissau military. While witnesses reported seeing a rocket-propelled grenade,[6] aides to Na Waie reported that a bomb was detonated under a staircase as Na Waie was heading to his office.[7]

Aftermath[edit]

In the early hours of the next day, Vieira was killed, apparently by troops loyal to Na Waie; a military representative subsequently denied allegations that Vieira's death had been a retaliation.[3] Army spokesman Zamora Induta did, however, say that Vieira had been involved in Na Waie's assassination.[8] An army officer said on March 5 that Na Waie had found a stash of cocaine weighing 200 kilograms at an army hangar about a week before he was killed.[9] His funeral was held at the Military Club in Bissau on March 8.[10] On March 26, it was reported that three senior officers — Colonel Arsene Balde, Colonel Abdoulaye Ba, and Brigadier General Melcias Fernandes — had been arrested in the preceding days for involvement in Na Waie's death.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "GUINEA-BISSAU: 65 senior officers readmitted to armed forces". IRIN. December 2, 2004. Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  2. ^ a b Associated Press (March 2, 2009). "A look at Guinea-Bissau's history of instability". The Miami Herald. Retrieved 2009-03-02.[dead link]
  3. ^ a b Pallister, David (March 2, 2009). "Guinea-Bissau president 'killed in clash between rival soldiers'". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 4 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  4. ^ "G.Bissau's military chief says survived attempt on his life". Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  5. ^ "Guinea-Bissau military chief killed in grenade attack". The Times. London. March 2, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  6. ^ "Attackers blow up part of Bissau armed forces HQ". Retrieved 2009-03-02.
  7. ^ "Guinea-Bissau president killed". Archived from the original on 3 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-02. Al Jazeera, 2 March 2009.
  8. ^ Howden, Daniel (2009-03-03). "President shot dead in palace as rebel troops take revenge". Independent. London. Archived from the original on 4 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-03.
  9. ^ "Murdered G.Bissau general to be buried Sunday", AFP, March 7, 2009.
  10. ^ "Guinea Bissau military chief buried", AFP (IOL), March 8, 2009.
  11. ^ "Three officers arrested over GBissau army chief killing", AFP, March 26, 2009.