At 48, Bakayoko is the head of state’s "securocrat". He brings zeal to his task, moreover, and is known as the principal scourge of the pro-Gbagbo camp. He has placed his men at the heart of the Ivory Coast’s freemasonry movement, to which he himself belongs, as well as at the head of the state security, intelligence and policing institutions under his control. His status as government number two and his presidential ambitions have forced him to spruce up his image in recent months, notably by restraining his much decried taste for party-going. He has certainly distanced himself from the night club scene but still has numerous connections in the worlds of show business and sport which he continues to adore.

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