President Bola Tinubu on Tuesday said the biting sanctions imposed by the Economic Community of West African States on the Niger junta would not be lifted despite the military leaders’ promise to negotiate with the regional bloc to resolve the crisis in the francophone country.
Tinubu, who stated this when he received the Special Envoy of President Ali Ondimba and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Gabon, Hermann Immongault, at the State House in Abuja, insisted that military takeover of government was no longer acceptable in Africa.
However, the junta led by Gen Abdourahmane Tchiani, has demanded restoration of electricity cut off by the Federal Government as part of the embargoes slammed on the coupists following the overthrow of President Mohamed Bazoum on July 26.
Tchiani, who made the request during their meeting with the Ulamas from Nigeria in Niamey on Saturday, said they were outraged that the regional bloc did not hear from them before slamming several embargoes on them, including the threat of military intervention to restore democracy.
But Tinubu, who is the ECOWAS chairman, told his visitors on Tuesday that any interference in democratic governance would not be accepted by the leadership of the regional body.
The President also praised the solidarity of the Economic Community of Central African States on the political impasse in the Republic of Niger, according to a statement released by the Presidential Spokesperson, Ajuri Ngelale.
The President said the special message of support and solidarity from President Bongo, who doubles as the Chairman of ECCAS, expressing the full support for ECOWAS resolutions on the unconstitutional takeover of government in Niger, proved once more that military interference in democratic governance was not acceptable anywhere, and certainly, no longer so on the African continent.
Tinubu reinforced the position of the regional body not to accept any attempt by the military junta in Niger to intimidate and harass Bazoum who is in custody.
SOURCE: PUNCH NEWSPAPER