With the latest round of political conflict continuing to destabilize the minuscule West African country since late 2019 and early 2020, new evidence (and rumours) has emerged that cocaine is once again transiting through Guinea-Bissau.

The COVID-19 lockdown in the country is most likely now providing convenient cover for drug trafficking. Although the cocaine economy is but one contributor to the decades-long litany of instability blighting Guinea-Bissau, it is an important factor, and one that needs to be addressed afresh.

Like the drug itself, the money generated by the cocaine transit trade has become addictive for some political and military figures in Bissau. Several previous attempts to end the trade have failed.

A more systematic and long-term policy response from the international community is now required if lasting stability in Guinea-Bissau is ever to be achieved.