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ECOPARL sets up mediation committee to interface with military junta in Niger



By Linda Ike

The Economic Community of West African states (ECOWAS) Parliament has set up a mediation committee to interface with the military junta over the political crises in Republic of Niger.

The 12 man peace committee will be chaired by the first Deputy Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, Hon. Idris Wase.

The committee is expected to go to Niger Republic and mediate with the military to find a lasting solution to the crises caused by the coup d’etat led by General Abdourahmane Tchiani.

Members of the committee are also mandated to interface with the military juntas in Guinea, Mali and Burkina Faso in resolving the military takeover in West African states.

These were the resolutions reached at a one-day extraordinary virtual plenary session of the ECOWAS Parliament held on Saturday August 12, 2023.

Deliberating on the issue, parliamentarians were divided on the ways of interventions that would be employed to ensure democracy is returned in Niger and also to end the continuous seizure of democratic rule by the military in the subregion.

Some members harped on the use of dialogue and diplomacy in resolving the crises other than military intervention, while some Parliamentarians insisted on returning democracy in Niger by force, noting that the dialogue used in other countries like Mali, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Conakry has not worked.

Contributing, the first Deputy Speaker of the parliament, Idris Wase opposed using military force to end the crises, as he noted that any war in Niger Republic will affect 60 percent of Nigerians.

Also, Hon. Awaji-Inombek Abiante, a Nigerian delegation to the Parliament said diplomacy and dialogue is the best way to resolve the issue.

He stressed the need for West African countries to address the root causes of coup in the region.

The Parliamentarians kicked against the sanctions on the people of Niger which according to them have subjected the citizens to hardships, suggesting the sanctions should be on the military juntas.

On his part, Ali Ndume condemned the closure of Nigeria- Niger border and cutting of electricity by President Bola Tinubu without the approval of the Nigerian National Assembly.

The session however ended without adoption of draft resolutions by the parliamentarians.

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