ECOWAS leaders in an extraordinary virtual session call for reinstatement of Ousted 75 year old Malian President Keita

West African Heads of states under the regional umbrella ECOWAS, held an emergency virtual summit on Thursday and demanded for immediate reinstatement of Ibrahim Baboucarr Keita as Mali’s leader. President Keita was removed from power in a military coup on Tuesday by members of the armed forces
The leaders agreed on sending envoys to Mali to help secure “the return of constitutional order.”
The regional committee has already suspended Mali from the bloc and closed all borders to stop any form of trade due to the coup.
As reported by Reuters, ECOWAS plans to send a delegation of presidents to Mali’s capital, Bamako. The team is set to include President of Niger, 58 years old Macky Sall of Senegal and Ghana’s 76 year old Nana Akufo-Addo, to mediate over the crisis.
“We have decided to immediately send a high-level delegation in order to ensure the immediate return of constitutional order,” said ECOWAS at the end of a video summit.
In a closing remark, chairperson of the group, Mahamadou Issoufou, President of Niger said, “We call for the restoration of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita as president.” He further added that through the talks, ECOWAS would “convey to the military junta leaders that the times of taking power by force are over in this region.”
“Mali is in a critical situation, with serious risks that a collapse of the state and institutions leads to reversals in the fight against terrorism and organized crime, with every consequence for all our community… this country needs our solidarity even more,” Issoufou told the coup leaders.
The 75-year-old President Keita has been in power since 2013 and won a second term in 2018 but since then has become unpopular with the now disgruntled population.
Many Malians have blamed him for rising poverty levels,incompetence, his collusion with France to rip off Mali its natural resources and insecurity.
He was arrested and placed under heavy security on Tuesday along with his Prime Minister and other government officials.

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