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Djeni Kobina

Djeni Kobina



Djéni Kobina Kouamé was born in Gagnoa, Côte d'Ivoire, to Djéni Pahan and Yao Eba, both belonging to the N'zima ethnic group, commonly known as Apolonian. His early education commenced at Soubré public school in 1944-1945, and he went on to obtain his Certificate of Elementary Primary Studies (CEPE) in 1949-1950. After completing the second year (CM2) at Soubré, he continued his secondary education at the Catholic college of Daloa.

In 1956, Djéni Kobina Kouamé enrolled at the classical high school in Abidjan, marking the beginning of his academic achievements. Recognized for his academic prowess, he was included on the enrollment list and received a scholarship for first grade during the 1957-1958 school year. His educational journey culminated in the attainment of a baccalaureate diploma in the experimental sciences series in 1958, followed by the successful completion of the 2nd part of the baccalaureate diploma with good honors in 1959. Djéni Kobina Kouamé's pursuit of knowledge led him to France with a state scholarship, where he earned a degree in history-geography at the Faculty of Letters of Nancy-Lorraine in 1963. Subsequently, he continued his studies at the Faculty of Letters in Poitiers, obtaining the CAPES in history and geography in 1966, despite a setback in the high school aggregation exam the same year.

Returning to Ivory Coast in 1966, Djéni Kobina Kouamé embarked on a diverse professional career. He initially joined the civil service and worked at a high school in Bingerville in 1968. Over the years, he ascended the ranks, serving as headmaster of the classical high school of Bouaké in 1969 and later being appointed departmental director (or regional director) of Education in Abidjan in 1970. However, his involvement in the Ivory Coast secondary teachers' union (Synesci) from July 1970 to March 31, 1971, led to his incarceration under the Houphouetiste regime. Despite facing adversity, he persevered and was released from military service in 1973, subsequently being appointed Inspector General of National Education.

Djéni Kobina Kouamé's professional journey included roles as chief of staff in various Ivorian ministries, demonstrating his commitment to public service. In 1991, he encountered a turning point when he was arrested but allowed to exercise his retirement rights.

Beyond his professional life, Djéni Kobina Kouamé was an active participant in student union movements in France from 1963 to 1966. In 1970, he played a pivotal role in establishing the National Union of Secondary School Teachers of Côte d'Ivoire (SYNESCI), serving as its first general secretary for one year.

Politically, Djéni Kobina Kouamé was an early activist in the Ivorian Liberation Movement in France. Upon his return to Ivory Coast, he became a member of the PDCI-RDA, holding positions in the political bureau and central committee until his tacit resignation on September 27, 1994. In 1990, he initiated a current of thoughts within the PDCI-RDA called PDCI-Rénovation, advocating for a reassessment of the party's history. However, his inability to express his views during the extraordinary congress in April 1994 led him to break with the PDCI-RDA and found the RDR, a liberal party in Côte d'Ivoire, on June 27. Djéni Kobina Kouamé was elected as secretary general of the RDR in July 1995.

Tragically, Djéni Kobina Kouamé passed away on October 19, 1998, leaving behind a legacy of educational, union, and political contributions in Côte d'Ivoire.


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