The special representative from West Africa’s main regional bloc has been given 72 hours by Mali’s transitional government to leave the country over “actions incompatible with his status”, the foreign ministry said on Monday.
“He (Hamidou Boly) is engaged with groups, individuals from civil society, from the world of politics and even from the world of the press, who undertake actions hostile to the transition and which are not in line with his mission,” Mali Foreign Minister Abdoulaye Diop told the state broadcaster.
A spokesperson for Mali’s M5-RFP political coalition, which led anti-government protests that culminated in last year’s coup, accused Boly of supporting the former regime, and called on the government to withdraw the country from ECOWAS.
“He is an enemy of Mali, he is against Mali, he is here to divide us and not to unite us,” said M5-RFP spokesperson Jeamille Bittar.
Mali is being pressed by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to respect its commitment to have presidential and legislative elections next February following last year’s military coup.
Mali’s interim authorities over the weekend confirmed to a U.N. Security Council delegation that they will agree on a date for post-coup elections after national reform consultations in December.
Niger’s U.N. ambassador, Abdou Abarry, said they were told the national reform talks in December would agree an electoral schedule that would be announced soon afterward.
The U.N. delegation met transitional authorities, political parties and civil society representatives in Bamako to assess Mali’s progress back to democracy following the August 2020 overthrow of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
“Mali reiterates the willingness of the government to maintain dialogue with ECOWAS and to work together for the success of the transition,” the foreign ministry’s statement said.