HBC - Ivory Coast


Cote d"Ivory has had close ties to France since its independence in 1960, couple with the development of cocoa production for export, and foreign investment has made Cote d'Ivoire one of the most prosperous of the West African states, but did not protect it from political turmoil. In December 1999, a military coup - the first ever in Cote d'Ivoire's history - overthrew the government. In late 2000, Junta leader Robert Guei blatantly rigged elections that were held and declared himself the winner. Popular protest forced him to step aside and brought Laurent Gbagbo into power.

In September 2002, Ivorian dissidents and disaffected members of the military launched a failed coup. Rebel forces claimed the northern half of the country, and in January 2003 were granted ministerial positions in a unity government under the auspices of the Linas-Marcoussis Peace Accord. In December 2003, President Gbagbo and rebel forces resumed implementation of the peace accord after a three-month stalemate, but issues that sparked the civil war, such as land reform and grounds for citizenship, remained unresolved. In March 2007, President Gbagbo and former New Forces rebel leader Guillaume Soro signed the Ouagadougou Political Agreement.

As a result of the agreement, Soro joined Gbagbo's government as Prime Minister and the two agreed to reunite the country by dismantling the zone of confidence separating North from South, integrate rebel forces into the national armed forces, and hold elections. Disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of rebel forces have been problematic as rebels seek to enter the armed forces. Citizen identification and voter registration pose election difficulties, and balloting planned for November 2009 was postponed to 2010. On 28 November 2010, Alassane Dramane Ouattara won the presidential election, defeating then President Laurent Gbagbo. Gbagbo refused to hand over power, resulting in a 5 month stand-off. In April 2011, after widespread fighting, Gbagbo was formally forced from office by armed Ouattara supporters with the help of United Nations and French forces. Several thousand UN peacekeepers and several hundred French troops remain in Cote d'Ivoire to support the transition process.

Cote d"Ivoire borders the North Atlantic Ocean, between Ghana and Liberia with a population of 21,952,093. According the the CIA's Country Profile, Cote d"Ivoire's age population is as follows:

  • 0-14 years: 39.8% (male 4,312,133/female 4,240,500)
  • 15-64 years: 57.2% (male 6,262,802/female 6,039,458)
  • 65 years and over: 3% (male 320,396/female 328,873) (2011 est.)

In 2009, HBC visited Cote d"Ivoire began working with NGO Le Soutien, a non governmental organization that receives funding from the United States to provide HIV/AIDS testing, education, and care services to Ivorians. HBC provides mentorship, guidance, and feedback to Stanley Bossou, Executive Director of NGO Le Soutien on programs and services developed. HBC intends to replicate the Ghana HIV/AIDS Awareness Project in Cote d"Ivoire by late 2012 or early 2013.

Should you be interested in knowing more about our work in Cote d'Ivoire or be interested in partnering with us on projects and/or initiatives; please don't hesitate to contact us at your convenience.