Mali’s former Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubèye Maïga, died on Monday at 67 at a hospital in the capital, Bamako, his family said.
In August last year, Maïga was arrested and detained over allegations of corruption in the purchase of a presidential jet during President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta’s administration.
The charges are from 2014 when he was minister of defence.
In a statement, the government said he died after a “long illness” and offered its condolences to the family.
As first vice-president of ADEMA-PASJ Maïga opposed the party’s decision to support President Amadou Toumani Touré’s bid for re-election in the April 2007 presidential election, and he was consequently expelled from the party.
Along with several other ministers, he was arrested during the coup when rebel soldiers stormed the presidential palace on 22 March 2012. On 25 March, he began a hunger strike along with 13 other arrested officials to protest his detention.
After Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta won the 2013 presidential election, Maïga was appointed to the government as Minister of Defense on 8 September 2013. He was replaced by Bah Ndaw, following the army’s defeat at the hands of Tuareg rebels in Kidal in May 2014. While some blamed him for the defeat, others believed he was being used as a scapegoat.
On 29 August 2016, he was appointed Secretary-General of the Presidency with the rank of minister.
Maïga was named Prime Minister on 30 December 2017. He resigned on 18 April 2019 amid public protests following the Ogossagou massacre.