VIDEO: ECOWAS Mission to Niger was Fruitful - Abdulsalami Abubakar

President Bola Tinubu meets with some critical stakeholders on the ECOWAS intervention in the crisis in Niger Republic

The leader of the special envoy of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Abdulsalami Abubakar, has said the outcome of his delegation’s meeting with the coup leaders was fruitful, noting that diplomacy won’t fail to restore the democratically elected government of deposed President Mohamed Bazoum.

The delegation, headed by Nigerian former head of State, General Abubabkar Abdulsalami (rtd) was at the Presidential villa to brief the President on the present demand of the Niger Coup junta.

Abdulsalami who address journalists after briefing ECOWAS Chairperson and Nigerian President, Bola Tinubu, on Tuesday, nobody wants war, expressing optimism that diplomacy won’t fail.

“As you are aware, the ECOWAS Heads of State have made me an envoy to Niger Republic and over the weekend, we were there to see the military people and discuss and find a way out of the lacuna we find ourselves,” the envoy said.

“I must say that our visit to Niger was very fruitful. It has open an avenue to start talking and hopefully, we will get somewhere.

“We’ve started talking; they made their own points and I made mine and I report to the ECOWAS chairperson and he will now consult with his colleagues.

“Hopefully, diplomacy will see the better of the day. Nobody wants to go to war; it doesn’t pay anybody. Our leaders have said if all fail, and I don’t think all will fail; we will get somewhere, we will get out of this mess.”

The coup leader, Abdourahamane Tiani, had said the junta will return to civilian rule within three years but ECOWAS rejected the move.

President Tinubu is Chairman of the Authority of the Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

Recall that the Niger’s coup leader had proposed a three-year transition of power after meeting a delegation of West African leaders and warned that any attack on the country would “not be a walk in the park” for those involved.

General Abdourahmane Tchiani, speaking on national television late on Saturday, gave no details on the potential transition, saying only that the principles for the move would be decided within 30 days at a dialogue to be hosted by the ruling military council. 

Speaking to State House reporters, after the meeting Gen. Abdulsalami (rtd), said the meeting with the president formed part of efforts to see a way of settling the political crisis after the military overthrew the democratically elected President.

Attending the meeting were the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Omar Touray; and the National Security Adviser to the President, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu. 

Meanwhile, the African Union has suspended Niger Republic over the ongoing situation.

Army officers toppled Bazoum on July 26, prompting the West African regional bloc ECOWAS to threaten to use force to reinstate him.

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