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Monday, June 17, 2024

Northern Senators reject military action in Niger

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The Northern Senators Forum has cautioned against the use of military power toward tackling the military coup in Niger Republic, calling for diplomatic options to address the situation.

Senator Suleiman Kawu(NNPP-Kano), the spokesperson for the forum, said this when he briefed newsmen in Abuja on Friday.

“Secondly, we must strengthen our regional security architecture and enhance our collective response to security challenges. The coup in the Niger Republic has highlighted the fragility of our region and the need for a robust and proactive security framework. We must enhance intelligence sharing, joint training exercises, and capacity-building initiatives among our defense and security forces to effectively combat threats to our collective security and enhance interoperability.

“Thirdly, we must intensify our diplomatic efforts to engage with all relevant stakeholders. Dialogue and negotiation should be at the forefront of our approach to resolving the crisis in the Republic of Niger. We must engage with the transitional authorities, civil society organizations, and other key actors to foster an inclusive and peaceful transition process. “

However, the junta is also planning to recall Nigerien Ambassadors to Togo, the United States, and France, as it pushes to evict French and US troops in the country, while declaring an end to all Memorandum of Understanding between France and the Republic of Niger.

Defence sources privy to the ongoing meeting in Niamey, the Niger capital, confirmed the development to our correspondent Friday morning.

“The ongoing negotiation has failed. The junta has declared that it’ll recall Niger’s Ambassador to Nigeria, Togo, France, and the US,” an impeccable defence source said in a terse message sent to our correspondent Friday morning.

Meanwhile in an attempt to resolve the political crisis in the Niger Republic, the ECOWAS on Thursday dispatched two missions abroad, with the mandate to achieve a resolution to ending the crisis.

While the first delegation led by former Nigerian Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.), led the engagement with the junta and other parties in the Nigerien impasse in the country’s capital, Niamey; another delegation, led by Ambassador Babagana Kingibe led the engagement with the leaders of Libya and Algeria concerning the Niger crisis.

A statement on Thursday by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, indicated that the  Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, President Bola Tinubu, who dispatched both teams on the mission, charged the General Abubakar’s team with a mandate to expeditiously resolve the crisis in the troubled country.

The mission to Niger Republic which departed for Niamey immediately after President Tinubu’s briefing, was in line with the resolution reached at the end of the extraordinary summit of the ECOWAS held last weekend at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Briefing the two delegations, President Tinubu charged them to engage all stakeholders robustly with a view to doing whatever it takes to ensure a conclusive and amicable resolution of the situation in Niger for the purposes of African peace and development rather than a move to adopt the geopolitical positions of other nations.

Speaking after the meeting, General Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.) said the delegation would meet the coup leaders in Niger to present the demands of the ECOWAS leadership.

Both leaders of the two missions expressed optimism about the outcome of the assignments.

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