The 15-member Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) leaders have suspended with immediate effect Mali’s membership from the regional bloc following last week’s military coup and said authorities must stick to a timetable for a return to democracy.
The leaders held an emergency summit in Ghana’s capital, Accra, on Sunday to agree on a response to the Malian military’s ouster of a president and prime minister for the second time in nine months by Colonel Assimi Goïta, who made himself the interim president on Friday.
Last Monday, TOS News reported Goita detained interim President, Bah Ndaw and Prime Minister, Moctar Ouane who both resigned on Wednesday while still in detention. They were later released.
The West African bloc, however, did not ask Goita to step down from the position; it only said the country should nominate a new civilian prime minister and form a new inclusive government to proceed with the transition programme.
The leaders’ communique said the February 27, 2022 announced presidential election date should be maintained.
Neighbouring countries and international bodies fear the latest crises will affect the presidential election to be held in February 2022.