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President Buhari flies to Mali on peace mission

Valentine Chinyem

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President Muhammadu Buhari is set for a one-day peace mission to Bamako, the Republic of Mali on Thursday.

This is to help find lasting solution to the political crisis currently rocking the country.

In a statement issued by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the visit is sequel to the report by the ECOWAS Special Envoy to Mali, led by former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan.

ECOWAS had intervened seeking to find solution to the crises in the West African country, after a resistance group known as M5, asked that the Constitutional Court be dissolved, and that President Keita resigns, before any peace deal can be reached.

The group is accusing the president of using the court to nullify results of 31 parliamentary seats in the polls which was held recently as well as his inability to secure Malians, following the rise of insecurity in the country.

The statement reads, “The Nigerian President and some ECOWAS leaders led by the Chairman of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the sub-regional organisation, President Issoufou Mahamadou of Niger Republic, agreed to meet in Mali to engage in further consultations towards finding a political solution to the crisis in the country.

“Host President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Presidents Machy Sall of Senegal, Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire are expected to participate in the Bamako meeting.

“Former President Jonathan was at the State House in company of President of ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, on Tuesday to brief President Buhari on the unfolding situation in Mali, necessitating the visit of ECOWAS leaders to consolidate on the agreements reached by various parties.

“We will ask the President of Niger, who is the Chairman of ECOWAS to brief us as a group, and we will then know the way forward,” President Buhari had said.

He thanked Dr Jonathan for his comprehensive brief on the situation in Mali, “which you had been abreast with since when you were the sitting Nigerian President.”

“The former President had filled in President Buhari on his activities as Special Envoy to restore amity to Mali, rocked by protests against President Keita, who has spent two out of the five years second term in office.”