President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday evening returned to Abuja, after many hours of consultations and closed door meeting meant to mitigate political crisis in Mali.
KanyiDaily recalls that President Buhari had embarked on a peace mission to Mali in company of his predecessor former president Goodluck Jonathan who is the special envoy that led the mediation mission.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the meeting was attended by the host President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita; Presidents Machy Sall of Senegal, Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire.
The African leaders met in Mali for consultations towards finding a lasting solution to the political crisis in the country.
Crisis erupted after the court nullified results of 31 parliamentary seats in the polls held recently, awarding victory to some other contenders, which a resistance group, M5, said was at the instigation of President Keita.
The resistance group, M5, is insisting that the Constitutional Court must be dissolved, and the President resign before peace can return to the country.
Riots on July 10 led to the killing of some protesters by security agents, causing the crisis to spiral out of control, hence the intervention by ECOWAS.
Speaking to newsmen on the outcome of the meeting, the Chairman of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS, President Mahamadou Issoufou said the sub-regional organisation would do all it could to mitigate the political crisis in Mali.
Issoufou, who is the President of Niger Republic, said an extra-ordinary virtual meeting of ECOWAS Heads of State and government will be held on July 26,, to further deliberate on the issues raised, with a view to finding lasting solution to the crisis.
He said the sub-regional leaders had already agreed there would be a need for a compromise to protect the peace and integrity of the nation.
He added that allowing a political crisis to fester in Mali would affect the security situation in West Africa, especially neighbouring countries.
The ECOWAS Chairman commended Nigeria’s former President, Jonathan, for accepting to lead an initial mission to the country to broker peace, and make findings, while appreciating all the West African leaders who attended the meeting.
During the trip to Mali, President Buhari was seen wearing a face mask for the first time since the outbreak of the coronavirus in Nigeria in February 2020.