The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWA) Authority of Heads of State and Government, on Friday, resolved to engage with the leaders of the junta that recently seized authority in Burkina Faso.
The delegation from ECOWAS is expected to unravel the remote and immediate causes that necessitated the coupists to seize power from the government of Roch Marc Kabore.
Geoffrey Onyema, Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, disclosed some of the resolutions to State House Correspondents, after an emergency meeting of the ECOWAS highest decision-making arm.
He also revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari, fully backs the decision to first go and find out what must have prompted the latest coup.
Onyeama said Nigeria is also supportive of the ECOWAS demand for an immediate return to civil rule, the release of the President Roch Marc Kabore who had been held captive for days and total cooperation with the regional body in the process of sorting out the current situation.
“The position is, of course, we condemn the coup and we are asking for immediate return to constitutional order, the release of the President (Kabore) and anybody else who’s being detained and to cooperate with ECOWAS and to be part of ECOWAS decisions,” he emphasised.
Asked what President Buhari told the ECOWAS meeting, Onyema said, “The President said he was in support of the decisions that were taken at this summit. They condemned the coup. They demanded immediate release of President Kabore, who is being detained, and an immediate process of return to constitutional order.
“A decision that the Chiefs of Defense Staff of ECOWAS Member States should head tomorrow to Burkina Faso to assess the situation from a strategic also military angle, and to be followed immediately by a visit of a team of Ministers of Foreign Affairs of ECOWAS countries, again, to assess the situation and then report to a meeting of the Heads of States, and then a definitive decision will be taken as to how to proceed. ECOWAS is going to have to engage with the junta. Well, you have to,” he said.
It will be recalled that in the last lap of 2021 and early 2022, some African countries such as Mali, Sudan and the most recent being Burkina Faso, have been engulfed in political crisis, following almost similar coup incidents.
Although most of the coups have been bloodless, ECOWAS and other global bodies have openly condemned the action, for fear that it may snowball out of control if not checked on time.
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