Major General Ahmed Gaïd Salah, Deputy Minister of National Defense, Chief of Staff of the National People’s Army (ANP), called on the Algerian people during his working and inspection visit to the 4th Military Region to exercise extreme vigilance and to remain in total solidarity with their Army.
Major General Gaïd Salah called on the Algerians to join forces with the ANP Army to prevent the “infiltrations” into the widespread protest movement which has been going on in Algeria since 22 February.
The Algerian people must “show extreme vigilance, unite with their Army and not allow the instigators of pernicious plans to infiltrate the ranks of the people,” said Major General Gaïd Salah in this second speech delivered in two days during a field visit in Ouargla province.
Mr. Gaïd Salah thus urged the Algerian people to exercise extreme vigilance and remain in solidarity with their Army in order to prevent the instigators of pernicious plans from infiltrating its ranks “under any conditions and circumstances”.
The Army Corps General also referred to the “major challenge related to the fight against corruption, the lobbies of which have ramifications in the political, financial and media spheres, as well as in State institutions”, as he put it.
He pointed out that the approach followed in the fight against this scourge is based on a “solid foundation”, based on “reliable and confirmed” information and on cases with “tangible evidence”.
These are, he explained, many “heavy, even dangerous” cases, which disturbed the “nefarious gang” that tried to “hinder” the efforts of the ANP Army and the country’s judiciary.
The day before, he had again discounted the two main demands of the protest movement, by calling for the holding of presidential election on 4 July to elect a successor to Mr. Bouteflika and considering “unreasonable” and “dangerous” the demand for the prior departure of leading figures from the ruling “system”.
The holding of the presidential election will ward off a “constitutional vacuum” carrying “dangers (…) with disastrous consequences”, Gaid Salah said, warning against the “infiltration” of individuals “with suspicious plans” who “use demonstrations (…) to convey certain irrational claims” such as the departure of all the “symbols of the system”.
Major General Gaïd Salah also defended on Tuesday the numerous judicial proceedings opened in corruption cases and targeting mainly personalities and businessmen linked to former President Abdelaziz Bouteflika and his profit-grabbing entourage.
These judicial proceedings are “based on precise and confirmed information and on many cases (…) with irrefutable evidence”, Major General Gaid Salah hammered to this effect.