The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has suspended the Republic of Mali from the regional body, ordering the country's military leaders to restore the transitional arrangement put in place in August 2020, with the goal of returning the troubled West African state to democratic rule by February 27, 2022.
Following the summit, Ghana's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, told the press that the heads of state expect the Malian military junta to immediately work closely with the ECOWAS Secretariat to restore the existing transitional arrangement by first appointing a civil leader to lead the process.
“The heads of state have decided to suspend Mali from ECOWAS in accordance with the protocol on democracy and good governance, while also working with ECOWAS to ensure that the transition is on track toward the end goal of returning the people of Mali to democratic rule,” Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey said.
The ECOWAS heads of state "strongly condemn this recent coup d'état, which is a violation of the decisions taken at the extraordinary Summit held at the Peduase Lodge, Aburi, Ghana on 15th September 2020 and a violation of the Transition Charter," according to a ten-paragraph released at the end of the summit.
“Following extensive discussions on the situation in Mali, the Heads of State and Government decided to reaffirm the importance and necessity of respecting the democratic process for ascending to power, in accordance with the 2001 ECOWAS Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance,” .
They strongly condemn all activities that have contributed to Mali's prolonged insecurity and the region's consequences.”
ECOWAS "demands the quick nomination of a new civilian Prime Minister, the formation of a new inclusive government to carry out the transition program, and the reaffirmation of the necessity to observe the 18-month transition term agreed in Accra." In this context, the already announced date of February 27, 2022 for the Presidential election should be strictly adhered to. To this end, a monitoring mechanism will be established.”
The statement underlined "the earlier decisions that the Transitional President, Vice-President, and Prime Minister should not, under any circumstances, be candidates for the next Presidential election" and "ECOWAS' commitment to accompany the transition process in Mali."
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