…seeks UN, EU, AU, support …says coup unacceptable in Africa
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has urged the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU), African Union (AU) and other bodies to support its sanctions on the military junta in Mali and Guinea for forcefully overtaking democratic governments in their countries.
This was the resolution of the ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit of the Authority of Heads of State and Government on Sunday in Accra, Ghana, to review the political situations in the two countries. The body declared coups d’état as unacceptable means of changing governments in Africa.
The communiqué at the end of the 3rd Extraordinary Summit on Guinea and Mali attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, on behalf of the President, stated that “the Authority decides to uphold the suspension of the Republic of Guinea from all ECOWAS governing bodies as well as the travel ban and freeze on financial assets imposed on the members of the CNRD and their family members until constitutional order is restored” in the country.
On Mali, the ECOWAS leaders at a meeting presided over by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Chair of the ECOWAS Authority resolved that in “conformity with the decision taken on 16th September 2021, the Authority decides to impose sanctions with immediate effect against individuals and groups who have been identified, including the entire transition authorities and the other transition institutions.”
According to him, the sanctions will also be imposed on the members of their families and these include a travel ban and a freeze on their financial assets.
T he body further instructed the President of the Commission to consider and propose additional sanctions at its next Ordinary Session on December 12 should the situation persist. Osibanjo said in a release by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, that African countries had gone far beyond military coup as a means of changing political actors and that coups were unacceptable.
He added that ECOWAS Heads of State and Government would continue to prevail on the military juntas in Guinea and Mali to return their countries to democratic rule.
The VP, who observed that significant progress had been made in the political situation in Guinea, regretted that not much had been achieved in Mali.
Other decision reached in Guinea by the ECOWAS summit were the reaffirmation of the demand for unconditional release of President Alpha Condé; calling on the Transition Authorities to urgently submit a detailed timetable of activities to be carried out under the transition towards the holding elections in accordance with the decisions of the Extraordinary Summit of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government held on 16th September 2021 and the appointment of Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambas as Special Envoy to Guinea with a view to strengthening dialogue with the Transitional Authorities towards a successful and short transition process.
On Mali, the leaders expressed concerns at the deterioration of the security situation as a result of the heightened political uncertainties in the country while calling on the Transition Authorities to intensify efforts to improve the security situation, especially by ensuring effective state presence in the affected areas.
The Authority also called for a more robust and offensive mandate and enhancement of the operational capacity of MINUSMA to deal with terrorism challenges in Mali. ECOWAS accordingly requested the United Nations Security Council to make the necessary amendments to the mandate of MINUSMA.
It also insisted that the transition timetable regarding the conduct of election in February 27, 2022 be adhered to by the Transition Authorities while condemning the expulsion of the ECOWAS Permanent Representative to Mali.
The summit was attended by the Presidents from Ivory Coast, Senegal, Niger and Guinea-Bissau.