IN THE NEWS

Security and political crisis in Mali: PACP denounces the old guard – L’Indicateur
 
Following recent events in Mali: The PACP party officials make a point - Mali Demain
 
Niankoro Yeah Samake at a PACP Press Conference: Choosing Diango Sissoko as Prime Minister is a setback for Mali – L’Independant
 
Political perspectives in Mali: PACP favors holding the elections before liberation of the North  - 22 Septembre
 
Yeah Samaké, President of the Party for Civic and Patriotic Action (PACP) – Le Phenix
 
Malian with Utah ties has big aspirations for his homeland  - Salt Lake Tribune
 
Yeah Samaké, “I have a passion for serving Mali” – Afribone
(more…)


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  • Billy Hesterman, from the Daily Herald in Utah, did a story on the situation in Mali and what Yeah Samake is doing to make a difference.

    BYU Grad’s Bid to be President of Mali on hold

    Click here to view this article online in the Daily Herald. 

    The situation in Mali is bleak.

    Just this year Mali’s military staged a coup on the national government because they claimed they were not receiving enough support to fight the al-Qaeda supported rebellion in the northern part of the west African country. More than 300,000 Malians have fled from their homes to avoid being ruled by the rebels and the country is losing foreign aid as it goes deeper into conflict.

    The country was supposed to hold elections this year in which Brigham Young University graduate Yeah Samake was hoping to take over as the country’s president. But with a major conflict taking place and the government being overthrown by the military, that election has been put off until May 2013 so that the country can get its affairs in order.

    Currently an interim government has been established and work is being done to strengthen the army that overthrew the government. But the slow-moving process is leaving people without food and sufficient hygiene supplies while they wait for the military to reclaim areas in the northern part of the country.

    Samake though isn’t just waiting for the military to act or for his election to come around, he is trying to do something to bring help to his country. He is in the United States right now giving leaders an insider’s view of the situation. He has met with U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, to brief him on the status of the country and also met with state department representatives and United Nations officials to inform them about his country’s struggles.

    “There is significant human suffering going on right now in Mali. People are hungry. They can’t provide meat for their families. They sit and watch their kids and worry about providing daily meat to them. As a father and as a mother that hurts,” he said.

    In addition to his briefings to leaders about the status of his country, he also has traveled to Utah to raise money to support the refugees that are suffering in Mali. On Monday he will be in Lehi to host an event that is aimed at raising money and awareness about his people’s situation.

    “One of the reasons I am here is to help women and children in those situations,” Samake said. “I’ve been in the refugee camps. I’ve met with the people. I’ve talked with the Red Cross and UNHR and have tried to find the needs of the people. Truly food shortage is significant. But tents are lacking, as well as hygiene kits. And the children that are out of school, they also need a playground and toys to play with.”

    Read more »

    Thank you, Yaya Samaké for another great article in 22 Septembre!

    Yeah Samake on the Government of Cheick Modibo Diarra: “We must stand together as one behind our country”

    The Party for Civic and Patriotic Action (PACP) is not conducive to the establishment of a new government, simply because it will delay the resolve of the current challenges facing our nation. They prefer that political support be increased through advice and proposals to the team of  Cheick Modibo Diarra, to allow Mali to overcome this critical phase in its history. This is the position expressed by the President of PACP, Niankoro Yeah Samaké, last Saturday, during a press conference at PACP headquarters.  

    At the event, the PACP President spoke of the latest institutional developments as well as the security crisis that has recently plagued our country. This includdes the recent disputes between young fighters from GAO against the MNLA. On this subject, the PACP, speaking through Yeah Samaké, praised the courage of the youth in those areas and requested that their actions are supported throughout all of Mali.

    “The Party for Civic and Patriotic Action expresses gratitude for the youth of Gao and their recent actions. The PACP is grateful to see that through Mali, and across the occupied areas, forces of resistance are standing up against the occupation of the rebels, to encourage the unification of Mali. So, all Malians, North and South, must encourage these forces, working nonstop against the rebels. They give us hope that Malians will not give in to the violent Islamic movements,” said Yeah Samake.

    On the issue of the establishment of an all-inclusive government, as a representative of the political stage in Mali, Yeah Samake spoke clearly. While he agrees that their request is legitimate, he argues that this approach will only waste time as Mali tries to meet the challenges ahead. “I’m not saying that their demands are not legitimate, to  include political parties in the government. But we must recognize that time must be spend unifying Mali and joining forces to remove the occupation over 2/3 of Mali. Those who have ideas or would like to contribute can do so without being a part of the government. We must put aside our political ambitions, our partisan ambitions, to save Mali. We must stand together as one behind our country, because during the formation of the government, we promised our support. Regardless, it will be very difficult for politicians to agree on the composition of the government,” said Yeah Samake. In reaction to possible foreign intervention, the President of PACP was rather, in favor of a Malian solution.

    To read this article in French: Yeah Samaké à propos du gouvernement Cheick Modibo Diarra : «Nous devons nous dresser comme un seul homme derrière cette équipe»

    Read more about PACP’s visit to the Malian Refugees in Burkina Faso. Vive le Mali!

    Malian Refugees in Burkina Faso: The Mission of PACP

    By Hamidou TOGO

    The Chairman of PACP, Niankoro Yeah Samake, reported his visit to the Malian refugees in Burkina Faso in a recent press conference. It was held last Wednesday at the party headquarters in Faladié.

    At the conference, Samake was surrounded by several members of the Political Bureau of the Party for Civic and Patriotic Action (PACP), including Bourama Traore, Vice President and General Secretary Aboubacar Sidiki Fomba.

    The meeting began with a video of the Malian Refugees in Djibo in Burkina Faso.

    In the video, the spokesman for the refugees warmly thanked their visitors (the delegation of PACP) and expressed his commitment for the unity of Mali.

    According to Yeah Samake, he led the delegation, on behalf of the PACP to visit camps in Djibo Mentao in Burkina Faso, from June 10 to 16, with Bourama Traore, Vice President, and Dramane BAGAYOKO, member of the BPN.

    Before heading to the refugee camps, the delegation met in Ouagadougou, with the Ambassador of Mali, Seydou Traore, as well as his employees and other communities in Mali.

    These initial contacts, he said, gave the delegation the opportunity to inquire about and understand the situation of the displaced Malians.

    After, the delegation headed to Djibo, 250 km from Ouagadougou, in the province of Soum.

    In this locality, the members of PACP first met and exchanged greetings with officials from the department for social action and the local director of UNHCR (UN High Commissioner for Refugees) before visiting the refugees.

    Camp Djibo, he said, is divided into three sites: North Mentao,Center Mentao, and South Mentao.

    These sites are set up according to the different ethnic communities (Tamasheq blacks, Arabs and Touareg).

    This camp contains, according to figures provided by Yeah Samake, about 14,000 displaced refugees. According to the embassy, there is an estimated 36,000 Malians in the entire territory of Burkina Faso.

    Quickly, before the countrymen became too anxious, he explained the purpose of his visit.

    He said he had come to sympathize with the refugees, to understand the reality of their circumstances, and to identify the concerns to see how PACP could best provide support.

    “I have not come to you behalf of the Malian government. I came to see you as a brother, wounded by the situation in which you live. Your suffering, is our suffering…” these words were spoken by Yeah, in front of the refugees.

    Based on the needs expressed by the refugees, they need, among other things, better tents for the rainy season, better food, more food, and to return home to their motherland quickly.

    In addition, children have expressed their desire to go to school, to play, and to have fun…

    The PACP delegation, according to their leader, has noted all of their concerns.

    As they left, they offered a symbolic envelope of 700,000 FCFA to the entire camp Djibo.

    Recapping his experience, Yeah recounted, in the North Mentao camp, a stronghold of Tuareg independence, PACP faced those who were upset because they did not want to hear about Mali. But after they arrived, they calmed down, he said.

    Regarding the cry of those refugees in Djibo, the Party for Civic and Patriotic Action launched an SOS to its partners both inside the outside the country. According to the president of PACP, a shipment of 180,000 meals has already left the U.S. for Mali.

    In addition, the party has contacted a company for the tent fabric. However, he said, it is difficult to promise something you do not have on hand.

    The refugee camps of Sévaré (Mopti), in Mauritania … are also on the agenda of PACP. The party will visit them in the days to come.

    In any case, solidarity, assistance to the poor and defenseless, and altruism are, among others, defined traits of Yeah Samake. Indeed, as Executive Director of the Mali Rising Foundation, Yeah has brought several U.S. doctors to Mali each year to treat patients for various diseases. To serve the children, Mali now has 15 new schools. Also, it offers annual scholarships to students from Mali to the United States. That’s not all. After his quiet stay in the U.S., he decided to return with his family to Mali, to serve his country.

    “I love my country, so I left the U.S., leaving my comfortable life, to contribute to and serve my nation”, Samake likes to say.

    In the elections of 2009,he ran for mayor and took charge of the town of Ouéléssébougou, which he loves so much.

    Read the article in French: Maliens réfugiés au Burkina-Faso : la mission-éclair du PACP

    Recently, Yeah interviewed with Mali Buzz about the current situation in Mali, the rebels in the north, and the upcoming elections. Check it out!

    Yeah Samake answers questions about the crises in Mali

    Madiara Kone : Good evening and welcome! Mr. Yeah SAMAKE , 2012 presidential candidate will kindly answer our questions, for a second time, within our group. During this debate we will discuss the crisis in the north, the institutional crisis and also the most important and necessary solutions.

    On January 17, 2012, a rebellion took over in northern Mali, and the Malian soldiers abandoned their territories, due to lack of logistics and others reasons. In March 2012, a coup occurred that caused total panic across the nation. Following the coup, Mali saw a sudden deterioration of the government, increased social tensions, riots between military corps, a reckoning, the beating of the Interim President, Dioncounda Traore, looting, bankruptcies, layoffs and the closure of hotels, restaurants and some businesses. Other sectors of the economy have been hit hard. There has been increased tension in international relations regarding the role of regional organizations and thee responses of other surrounding countries. 

    Some think that the coup was even a blessing to clean out the radical political leaders who castigated and concealed the imbalance and inequality among Malians, and others think that the coup is a danger to our hard-won democratic stability and a violation of human rights. Can Mali regain stability? Will it regain its territories conquered by Islamists? Will there be credible and transparent elections in 2013? These are questions we all ask! Only God knows what will happen and we pray for mercy on our Mali! 

    We have over a dozen speakers prepared with questions and we have arranged everything in advance to respect the time limit.

    Madiara Kone: Good evening Mr. Samake, welcome and thank you for responding to our invitation.

    Yeah Samake: It is with great pleasure that I have joined the debate. I thank all the women and those who care for Mali to participate in the solving the crises that plague our dear homeland. I pray that we all will be guided by our love for Mali.

    Moussa Drama: Good evening and thank you for being with us tonight! My question is: 1) I saw the pressure of ECOWAS and the FDR on the government to form a new, unified government, if it happens, are you willing to take an office? 2) What is your call to action for the international community?

    Yeah Samake: 1) No, I think we can all serve this country outside of government. I do not condition my contribution to my entry into the government. 2) I call common sense to the international community. Malians must solve these crises on their own to be sustainable. We appreciate their support, but it decreases the ability of Mali to solve the problem by instead, solving it for us.

    Yeah Samake: I concur that the elections must not to be organized according to the resolution of the crisis in the north. These are the issues that are related but must have independent solutions.

    The interview continues…

    To read more of this article in French: “Yeah Samake se prête aux questions des internautes sur la double crise malienne”

    Thank you, Ben Dao, for a great article about PACP’s visit to the Malian Refugees in Burkina.

    Crisis in the North: The PACP at the front of the Malian refugees living in Burkina

    Chairman of the Party for Civic and Patriotic Action(PACP), Niankoro Yeah Samake, accompanied by a strong delegation, visited the front of Malian refugees last week in Burkina Faso, living in the camps of  Djibo and Mintao. This information was provided at a press conference held by party officials on Wednesday,  June 20, 2012 at the PACP headquarters.

    The press conference last Wednesday was an opportunity for the leaders of PACP to explain, to reporters, the purpose of their visit with the Malian refugees living in Burkina Faso. The party chairman, Niankoro Yeah Samake, said that the trip was long, but fruitful, before stating: “Our goal was to first express our love and solidarity to our Malian brothers. Then, to see firsthand the difficulties they go through, and how we can offer our assistance.”

    According to Yeah Samaké, upon arrival in Burkina, they were welcomed by the Ambassador of Mali to Burkina, Faso Seydou Traore, where they were briefed about the situation of Malian refugees living in Burkina, before directing them to the camps Mintao and Djibo, located 220 km from Ouagadougou. Once they began talking to the refugees, they felt as if they were forgotten by the Malian authorities.

    They are concerned about their physical conditions (lack of food, tents, etc.), Yeah explained. These Malian refugees did not choose to leave the country of their ancestors, but they have suffered, they have been forced to go to a neighboring country. For this, Samaké suggested that “in these difficult times for our fellow refugees in Burkina, the spirit of solidarity should be a duty for every Malian, to ensure that each feels unity between the South and the North of Mali.”

    Ater noting the difficulties of these refugees, PACP officials contacted some partners to show their support. Locally, the party leadership made ​​a gesture of support with 700,000 CFA francs (about US dollars $1,400) to support the refugees.

    According to Yeah Samake, 180,000 meals are already on their way from the USA to be distributed among the refugees in Burkina. Other visits are planned in refugee camps in Mauritania and Niger for the future.

    Read the article in French: Crise du nord : Le PACP au chevet des réfugiés maliens vivant au Burkina

    Thank you Oumar Konate for a great report on the efforts of PACP. Vive le Mali!

    Malian Refugees in Burkina: The PACP regrets the bad conditions, despite multiple efforts

    On Wednesday, June 20, 2012, the Party for Civic and Patriotic Action (PACP) held a press conference at the party headquarters after the president returned from his visit to Malian refugees in Burkina Faso.

    To identify the concerns of Malian refugees in Burkina Faso, PACP sent a delegation to the host country. They visited the refugee camps Djibo and Mentao from the 10th to the 15th of June 2012,  under the leadership of Yeah Samaké, party chairman.

    According to Yeah, despite the efforts of all sides, the lives of our fellow refugees are fragile, especially during winter.  Tents are not adequate during the rainy season and the food is insufficient, he specified. For Yeah, even though the government has no resources to assert the situation, the citizen can play an important role. It is for this purpose that his party has supplied a total of 700,000 FCFA (about US dollars $1,400) for the refugees. And he is making every effort to reduce the suffering of these people. “We made ​​contact with partners. 180,000 meals have already left the United States to be delivered to the Malian refugees currently in Burkina Faso. We are also working to resolve the issue and exposure of their makeshift tents,” suggested Yeah Samake.

    In the video footage recorded in Burkina, with shining faces, the refugees expressed their joy over their visit.“This visit of PACP not only an act of solidarity, but also of patriotism,” stated a refugee. “We felt abandoned by the country. But this visit brought comfort.”

    To further emphasize, during the trip, the delegation was shocked by one thing: the reality that, even in camps, some Tuareg continue to instill in their children’s heads the idea of ​​independence. This contrasts with the commitment of the Arabs, Fulani, Tuareg and others, willing to defend the unity of Mali.

    Read the article in French: Maliens réfugiés au Burkina : Le Pacp regrette des conditions précaires malgré les multiples efforts