Heads of State and Governments of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have decided to put in place a monitoring mechanism to ensure that the 18-month transition period for Mali to return to constitutional rule is respected.
This comes with the decision to suspend Mali from ECOWAS after last week’s coup in which the President and Prime Minister were deposed by the military and held in custody..
They reaffirmed the importance and necessity of respecting the democratic process for ascending to power, in conformity with the 2001 ECOWAS Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance.
This was conveyed in a communique issued at the end of Extraordinary Summit of the Authority of the Heads of State and Governments last Sunday in Accra to resolve the crisis in Mali.
After extensive discussions, the bloc called for a new civilian Prime Minister to be nominated immediately to manage a ransition, adding that a new inclusive government should be formed to proceed with the transition programme.
The Authority reiterated earlier decisions that the head of the transition, the Vice-President and the Prime Minister of the transition should not, under any circumstances, be candidates for the forthcoming presidential election, slated for February 27, 2022.
The communique reaffirmed ECOWAS’ support to accompany the transition process in Mali, and urged all international partners to continue to support Mali towards the successful implementation of the transition.
The Authority urged the Mediator in the crisis, former Nigerian President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, to persevere in his mediation efforts and remain apprised of the situation in Mali.
“The Heads of State call for the immediate implementation of all these decisions in conformity with the transition timetable defined. To this end, they urge the Mediator to return to Mali within a week to engage stakeholders on these decisions,” it said.
The Accra meeting was convened by the ECOWAS Chairman, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to review the prevailing socio-political crisis in Mali, following the arrest, detention and subsequent resignations of the President and the Prime Minister of the Transition on May 26, 2021. It was additionally to determine the next line of action for the transition.
It was attended by 10 Heads of State, namely Roch-Marc Christian Kabore of Burkina Faso; Cote d’Ivoire’s Alassane Ouattara, Adama BARROW of The Gambia; Umaro Sissoco Embalo of Guinea Bissau; Liberia’s George Weah, Mohamed BAZOUM of Niger; Nigeria’s Muhammadu Buhari; Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leo-ne; and Togo’s Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe.
After the military takeover on August 18, 2020 in Mali, which led to the resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, the ECOWAS Authority called for the establishment of a civilian-led transition for a period of 18 months to allow for elections.