Mali crisis worsens, President resigns, despite efforts of Buhari, Jonathan, other ECOWAS leaders
Following its sanctions on Mali for ousting its political leaders in a military coup, the Heads of State and Governments of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, will, on Thursday, attend an extra-ordinary virtual meeting to take a position on the impasse.
President Muhammadu Buhari is billed to join other leaders of the regional bloc to discuss the next line of action after several failed mediation efforts to put an end to the destabilisation of the nation, a statement by Nigerian presidency said on Wednesday.
“There will be a Virtual Extraordinary Session of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government tomorrow, Thursday, August 20; on the situation in Mali. President @MBuhari will be participating,” Bashir Ahmad, a media aide to Mr Buhari said in a Twitter post.
A Tuesday coup by mutineering soldiers led to the arrest and eventual resignation of the Malian President, Ibrahim Keita, following weeks of civil protest against his perceived corrupt and inept rule. This has drawn the ire of the international community.
Following condemnations of the mutiny, ECOWAS banned Mali from all its decision-making bodies with immediate effect and ordered its member-states to shut their borders and economic trade against Mali.
“Following its statement published on August 18, reporting on an on-going mutiny within the Malian Armed Forces, ECOWAS has noted with great concern the seizure of power by Malian military putschists. This seizure of power intervenes within a difficult socio-political context.
“Indeed, ECOWAS recalls that a mediation process has been on-going during the past two months, with a view to finding a solution to this crisis.
“Following this power grab by Malian military putschists, which is likely to have a negative impact on peace and stability in Mali and in sub- region, ECOWAS utterly condemns the overthrowing of President Ibrahim Boubacar Kéita’s democratically elected government,” ECOWAS said in a statement.