ECOWAS rejects Malian military transition schedule, imposes sanctions

ECOWAS rejects Malian military transition schedule, imposes sanctions

After reviewing the situation in Mali at an Extraordinary Summit on Sunday leaders of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, rejected the transition schedule proposed by the Malian military junta, noting that “the proposed chronogram for a transition is totally unacceptable”.

The West African leaders, who met in Accra, Ghana, also imposed additional sanctions on the junta, including the withdrawal of all ECOWAS Ambassadors in Mali; and the closure of land and air borders between ECOWAS countries and Mali.

The communique issued after the summit stated that other sanctions against Mali’s military leaders are the suspension of all commercial and financial transactions between the ECOWAS Member States and Mali, except the following products: essential consumer goods; pharmaceutical products; medical supplies and equipment, including materials for the control of COVID-19 products, and electricity
The ECOWAS leaders also resolved to freeze the assets of the Republic of Mali in ECOWAS Central Banks; to freeze the assets of the Malian State and the state enterprises and parastatals in commercial banks as well as the suspension of Mali from all financial assistance and transactions from financial institutions.

The communique issued at the end of the summit also disclosed that the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government “instructs all Community institutions to take steps to implement these sanctions with immediate effect.


Noting that the sanctions will only be gradually lifted “after an acceptable and agreed transition chronogram is finalised and monitored-satisfactory progress is realised in the implementation of the chronogram for the elections.


Regarding Guinea, ECOWAS noted that it remained concerned about the slow progress of the transition process four months after the coup.

The communique also stated that “the Authority regrets the absence of chronogram for the election and the non-setting up of the National Council of Transition (CNT).

It also directs that a mission be fielded to Conakry to discuss the transition.


Earlier in his remarks at the opening session of the Summit, Chairman of ECOWAS, President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana, praised the commitment and support of West African leaders to the progress and prosperity of the sub-region.

Recalling the efforts of the leaders in resolving the crisis in parts of the sub-region, President Akufo-Addo said, “as you did through the entire year of 2021, you continue to demonstrate your commitment to responding to urgent and critical evolving situations in the region.

“This is the 6th Extraordinary Summit since I assumed the chair of the Authority that Your Excellencies have participated in concerning the vexed issues of Mali and Guinea.

It is a strong testimony to your leadership and concern for the progress of ECOWAS.


Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof.

Yemi Osinbajo, who represented President Muhammadu Buhari at the extraordinary summit, said that with its latest stand against unconstitutional seizure of power, leaders of ECOWAS have shown strong resolve and commitment to issues of good governance and democracy in the region.

Spokesman to the Vice President, Laolu Akande said in a release on Monday that Osinbajo disclosed that there is a strong resolve by the ECOWAS Member States to stand against coup d’états in the sub-region.

Akande said that Prof.

Osinbajo spoke to journalists after the Summit, saying “what is being done is unprecedented.

“In the years gone by, the African Union, then known as OAU and ECOWAS, never came down heavily on Coups d’états; but there is evidence now that there is a very strong resolve that ECOWAS and, indeed, AU and the international community will not accept unconstitutional take over of government.


Prof.

Osinbajo added that “it’s very evident that there is very strong resolve, which is why we are here today.

We expect that the actions that will be taken will point the junta in Mali in the right direction.

“I think ECOWAS has shown that it has not lost its bite where there are concerns about issues of good governance and democratic enterprises in the sub-region, which is why sanctions against Guinea and Mali were imposed.


Aside from Vice President Osinbajo and the Ghanaian President – who presided at the Summit, other West African leaders present at the Summit were Presidents Macky Sall of Senegal; George Weah of Liberia; Patrice Talon of Benin Republic; Roch Marc Christian Kaboré of Burkina Faso, and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire.

Other Heads of State present include Umaro Embalò of the Republic of Guinea Bissau; Mohamed Bazoum of Niger Republic; Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone, and the Vice President of The Gambia, Isatou Touray.

The session was also attended by former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, who is the ECOWAS Mediator for Mali; the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou; among other representatives of international organisations.

 
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ECOWAS rejects Malian military transition schedule, imposes sanctions

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