ECOWAS must end coups – Akufo-Addo

ECOWAS Chairman, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has called for a strong commitment from West African leaders to end the resurgence of coup d’etats to avert the destabilisation of the region.

“Excellencies, the resurgence of coup d’etats in the region is a matter of grave concern. This evolution challenges the democratic way of life we have chosen and we need to stand firm to protect democracy and freedom in the region.

“Let’s address this dangerous trend collectively and decisively before it devastates the whole region,” President Akufo-Addo said on Thursday at the opening of the Bloc’s extraordinary summit in Accra to deliberate on the political situation in Burkina Faso.

The meeting will also examine the current situation in Guinea and Mali and the contagious effect on the Region.

The Regional Bloc, which is grappling with terrorist attacks, insurgency and the COVID-19 pandemic, has experienced three military take-overs in the past 19 months, the latest being the January 24, 2022, coup in Burkina Faso, where army officers demanded the sacking of military chiefs and more resources to fight Jihadists, deposed 64-year-old President Roch Marc Christian Kabore.

ECOWAS condemned the coup sternly and had asked the junta to return the country to constitutional rule.

But the Burkinabe military authorities indicated that constitutional order would only be restored “when the conditions are right.”

Leaders of the Bloc last Friday held a virtual meeting on the situation in Burkina Faso and upheld the commitment to zero-tolerance for the unconstitutional toppling of governments.

ECOWAS, after a virtual meeting, dispatched two missions, one of the ECOWAS Chiefs of Defence Staff, and the other a Joint Ministerial Team to assess the security and political situations in Burkina Faso.

The two missions would present their report to the Authority of Heads of States and Government to enable the body take a firm decision on the country.

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