Minister of the Interior Hamed Bakayoko has been building up his contacts throughout a career which has seen him serve for 10 years without a break at the highest level of the Ivorian executive. He is an influential member of the RDR party and loyal friend of Ivorian president Alassane Ouattara and his wife and is seen today as one of the most influential figures in Ouattara's entourage. Following the crisis which followed the presidential elections in Ivory Coast in 2010, he was switched from the Ministry of New Information and Communication Technology to the Ministry of the Interior. As a former journalist and press boss, he has kept up solid friendships in the media sector, where many of his acquaintances are today at the head of the country's leading media organisations.

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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