No silencing the guns as coup rocks Niger


Niger coup

from EMEKA OKONKWO in Abuja, Nigeria
Nigeria Bureau
ABUJA, (CAJ News) – COUP reports emerging from Niger represent the latest crisis in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and another setback to the continent’s mantra of “silencing the guns.”

There is all-round condemnation to the attempt as the military claimed to have overthrown President Mohamed Bazoum.

ECOWAS is increasingly becoming the continent’s most volatile region, politically.

Bola Tinubu, ECOWAS chairman, denounced the actions of the Presidential Guard.

“ECOWAS condemns in the strongest terms the attempt to seize power by force and calls on the coup plotters to free the democratically- elected President of the Republic immediately and without any condition,” Tinubu stated.

Tinubu, president of neighbouring Nigeria, said the ECOWAS and the international community will hold all those involved in the plot responsible for the security and safety of the president, his family, members of the government and the general public.

ECOWAS does not take kindly to coups and never hesitates to suspend errant members.

The World Bank also expressed disquiet.

“The World Bank strongly condemns any attempt to seize power by force, including efforts underway to destabilize the Republic of Niger,” it stated.

“We enjoy a long-standing partnership with Niger and are closely following the unfolding situation. The World Bank urges all involved to maintain peace, stability and security.”

Antony Blinken, United States Secretary of State, early Thursday spoke to Bazoum, conveying support of the US to Niger’s democracy.

“He emphasized that the United States stands with the Nigerien people and regional and international partners in condemning this effort to seize power by force and overturn the constitutional order,” Blinken’s spokesperson said.

Instability has rocked Niger since independence from France in 1960.

Now a country of 27 million people, it has experienced three periods of military rule.

Bazoum (64), has been in power since 2021.

The African Union (AU) has met mixed fortunes in attempts to end conflict in the continent. Moussa Faki, AU Commission chairperson also denounced reports of Bazoum’s toppling.

– CAJ News

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