…Mali is drawing the attention of the world since mutinous soldiers seized power on Tuesday
Former President Goodluck Jonathan is expected to lead a team of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) diplomats to Mali for talks following the recent coup in the country.
According to a supporter of the new military regime and an ECOWAS source, the leaders are expected to arrive in the West African country on Saturday.
The source termed the assignment to Bamako as targeting “to help the search for solutions,” days after opposition soldiers seized power in Mali.
“We will receive the ECOWAS delegation with pleasure… it is important to talk to our brothers,” a junta official in the country told AFP on Friday.
Malian leaders, President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cisse were ousted on Tuesday by the mutinous military men following a vagaries of demonstrations by Malians who flooded the streets of the nation’s capital despite rainfall and pleas from mediators to stay home, demanding the resignation of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
The two principal leaders and others have been detained by the new military regime since then.
The coup has sent reactions around the West African sub-region, igniting fears that one of its most impulsive states could collapse, though the coup has been condemned by regional, continental and international organisations.
President Keita, who appeared to have succumbed to pressure, said on Wednesday that he had stepped down to avoid “bloodshed”.
Two days after the Malian leader was taken into custody, the 15-nation Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) announced that it would send a high-level delegation to the country.
The regional body clarified that this would, “ensure the immediate return of constitutional order” in Mali, saying it would suspend the country from its internal decision-making bodies.
In their various reactions, Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari, and other West African leaders also condemned the coup of the soldiers and requested that Keita be reinstated as president.
United Nations human rights officials gained access to President Keita and the others, although the junta said it had freed two prisoners, retaining 17 others.