ECOWAS Final Communique on the Political Situation in Mali - AFRICAN PARLIAMENTARY NEWS



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Wednesday, January 12, 2022

ECOWAS Final Communique on the Political Situation in Mali

Final Communique: 4th Extraordinary Summit of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government on the Political Situation in Mali

Accra, Republic of Ghana 9 January 2022

1.           The Authority of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) convened in Extraordinary Session in Accra, Republic of Ghana, on 9 January 2022, under the chairmanship of H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana and Chairperson of the ECOWAS Authority. The Extraordinary Session was to review political developments in the Republic of Mali since the last Summit held on 12 December 2021.

2.           Present at the Summit were the under-listed ECOWAS Heads of State and Government or their duly mandated representatives:

·         H. E. Patrice TALON, President of the Republic of Benin;

·         H.E. Roch Marc Christian KABORE, President of Burkina Faso;

·         H.E. Alassane OUATTARA, President of the Republic of Cote d’Ivoire;

·         H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa AKUFO-ADDO, President of the Republic of Ghana;

·         H. E. Umaro Sissoco EMBALO, President of the Republic of Guinea Bissau;

·         H.E. George Manneh WEAH, President of the Republic of Liberia;

·         H.E. Mohamed BAZOUM, President of the Republic of Niger;

·         H. E. Macky SALL, President of the Republic of Senegal;

·         H.E. Julius Maada BIO, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone;

·         H.E. Dr Isatou TOURAY, Vice-President of the Republic of The Gambia;

·         H.E. Yemi OSINBAJO, Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria ;

·         H.E. Robert DUSSEY, Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Integration and Togolese Abroad of the Togolese Republic ;

·      H.E. Belarmino Monteiro SILVA, Ambassador of the Republic of Cabo Verde to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

1.           The Session was also attended by

·         H.E. Dr Goodluck JONATHAN, Former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and ECOWAS Mediator for Mali;

·                     H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi BROU, President of the ECOWAS Commission;

·         H.E. Mahamat Saleh ANNADIF, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS);

·         H.E. Abdoulaye DIOP, President of West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU);

·            H.E. Bankole ADEOYE, Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, Representing the Chairperson of the African Union Commission;

·            Mr. El-Ghassim WANE, Head of the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stablilisation Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).

1.   The Heads of State and Government took note of the report of H.E. Dr Goodluck JONATHAN, Former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and ECOWAS Mediator for Mali and the Memorandum on the political situation in Mali presented by H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi BROU, President of the ECOWAS Commission. The Authority commended the quality of the reports and the recommendations contained therein.5. The Authority, during deliberations, regrettably observed the failure of the Transition authorities in Mali to take the necessary steps for the organisation of the Presidential elections before 27 February 2022 and contrary to the agreement reached with ECOWAS Authority on 15 September 2020 and the commitment in the Transition Charter. The Authority deeply deplores the obvious and blatant lack of political will from the Transition authorities that led to the absence of any tangible progress in the preparations for the elections, despite the willingness of ECOWAS and all regional and international partners to support Mali in this process.

2.   The Authority was briefed on the conclusions of the Assises National de la Refondation (ANR) of 13 December 2021, leading to the adoption of a calendar on the Transition in Mali. The calendar submitted on the 31st December 2021 by the transition authorities to the Chairperson of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, schedules presidential elections to take place by the end December 2026. This will imply a transition period of six and a half (6.5) years. The Authority noted that important stakeholders did not participate in those ANR, thus reflecting a lack of consensus by national stakeholders with regards to the proposed calendar.

3.    Following the visit of the Mediator to Mali on 5 January 2022, the Transition Authorities submitted on 8 January 2022, a new calendar scheduling the conduct of the presidential elections for the end of December 2025, setting the duration of the transition for a total of five and a half years (5.5) years.

4.   The Authority finds the proposed calendar for a transition totally unacceptable. This calendar simply means that an illegitimate military transition Government will take the Malian people hostage during the next five years. The Authority reiterates its call for the transition authorities to focus on activities geared towards an expeditious return to constitutional order and to defer key reforms within legitimate elected institutions to be established after the elections.

5.  In view of the above, the Authority decides to uphold the initial sanctions already imposed on Mali and on the transition authorities. The Authority also decides to impose additional economic and financial sanctions, in conformity with its deliberations at its Sixtieth Ordinary Session held on 12 December 2021 in Abuja, Federal Republic of Nigeria. These additional sanctions include:

a) Recall for consultations by ECOWAS Member States of their Ambassadors accredited to Mali;

b)   Closure of land and air borders between ECOWAS countries and Mali;

c) Suspension of all commercial and financial transactions between ECOWAS Member States and Mali, with the exception of food products, pharmaceutical products, medical supplies and equipment, including materials for the control of COVID-19, petroleum products and electricity;

d) Freeze of assets of the Republic of Mali in ECOWAS Central Banks;

e) Freeze of assets of the Malian State and the State Enterprises and Parastatals in Commercial Banks;

f) Suspension of Mali from all financial assistance and transactions with all financial institutions, particularly, EBID and BOAD.

1.   The Authority instructs all Community Institutions to take steps to implement these sanctions with immediate effect. The sanctions will be reviewed in view of a gradual lifting only after an acceptable and agreed calendar is finalised as well as monitored satisfactory progress is realised in the implementation of the calendar for the elections.

2.   These sanctions have been put in place to facilitate the process of a return to constitutional order in Mali which is necessary for peace, stability and growth. By excluding essential basic goods and services, the sanctions have been designed to avoid impact on the population.

3.   In addition, in view of the potentially destabilizing impact on Mali and the region, as a result of this transition in Mali, the Authority decides to activate immediately the ECOWAS Standby Force, to enhance its preparedness, should the need arise.

4.   The Authority calls on the African Union, the United Nations and other partners to support the process for the enforcement of these sanctions and continue to provide support for a successful political transition. It invites the neighbouring countries of Mali, which are not members of ECOWAS, particularly Algeria and Mauritania, to support the implementation of the sanctions. ECOWAS will shortly field a mission to these neighbouring countries led by the Chairperson of Council of Ministers.

5.   Despite the denial by the Malian Transition Government, the Authority remains deeply concerned by consistent reports on deployment of private security agents in Mali with its potentially destabilizing impact on the West Africa Region. The Authority notes that this situation is closely related to the stalled political transition in the country.

6.   The Authority strongly condemns the continued arrest and imprisonment of Malian Political personalities and former dignitaries by the Transition Authorities and demands that their cases be handled in line with the rule of law and respect of human rights.

7.   Regarding Guinea, the Authority remains concerned about the slow progress of the transition process four (4) months after the coup d’Etat. The Authority regrets the absence of an electoral calendar and the National Council of Transition (CNT). It also directs a mission be fielded to Conakry to discuss the transition process with the transition authorities.

8.   Concerning the Institutional Reforms of ECOWAS, the Authority instructs the President of the Commission to take all necessary measures for the new statutory appointees to take office on 1st July 2022 at the end of the tenure of the current Management. This implies the finalization of the allocation of remaining statutory positions and the launch of the recruitment process.

9.   The Heads of State and Government express their deep gratitude to H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa AKUFO-ADDO, President of the Republic of Ghana and Chairperson of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, for his leadership in ensuring the success of the Summit.

Done in Accra, this 9th day of January 2022


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