News / Africa

ECOWAS Abhors Coup D’états, Says President Chambas

The President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is expressing concern over tensions in Niger after mutinous soldiers ousted embattled President Mamadou Tandja in a coup d’état Thursday.

Soldiers stand guard by Niamey's national hospital, Niger, during a coup attempt against President Mamadou Tandja on 18 Feb. 2010
Soldiers stand guard by Niamey's national hospital, Niger, during a coup attempt against President Mamadou Tandja on 18 Feb. 2010

Multimedia

Audio
  • Dr. Mohammed Ibn Chambas, ECOWAS President Spoke With Clottey

Peter Clottey

The President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is expressing concern over tensions in Niger after mutinous soldiers ousted embattled President Mamadou Tandja in a coup d’état Thursday.

Mohammed Ibn Chambas said officials of the regional bloc will soon arrive in Niger to ascertain the situation on the ground as well as encourage the military to immediately return the country to constitutional rule.

“We are very and deeply concerned about it and that has been expressed by the chairman of ECOWAS in his statement that this is a throwback to the past in the region, a situation which obviously is unacceptable. We have a policy now of zero tolerance for violent change of government just as we find totally unacceptable attempts by governments to hang on to power through manipulation of constitutions,” he said.

Deposed President Mamadou Tandja
Deposed President Mamadou Tandja

Abdul Kamardine, a human rights activist in the capital, Niamey said that shortly after 10pm local time, the spokesman of the new military regime, Colonel Abdulkarim Goukoye announced on national television that they have taken over the government.

In a statement, Colonel Goukoye said the aim of the takeover is to restore democracy after announcing the suspension of the constitution and all government institutions.

He also imposed a dusk to dawn curfew from 6pm to 6am and closed Niger’s borders with its neighbors while suspending land and air travels.

But ECOWAS President Ibn Chambas said the new military regime should return the country to constitutional rule.

“The way forward in Niger is through a consensus around the constitution and this is what ECOWAS will work with all Nigeriens to re-establish dialogue and to build consensus on constitutional government,” Chambas said.

Colonel Goukoye urged the international community’s understanding and support after saying the military is the custodian of Niger’s national unity.

ECOWAS President Mohammed Ibn Chambas
ECOWAS President Mohammed Ibn Chambas

The new military regime has tasked a military council known as Conseil Superieur Pour La Restoration De la Democratie (CSRD) to help with the country’s return to democracy.

Ibn Chambas said ECOWAS is working closely with the African Union (AU) ahead of sending officials of the regional bloc to ascertain the situation in Niger.

“The chairman of the ECOWAS is in consultations with the AU chairperson. I have spoken to Mr. Jean Ping, chairperson of AU Commission and others and we are working as quickly as possible that is as soon as the security situation on the ground allows it to send an ECOWAS mission, and hopefully to be followed quickly by the AU. We will work hand in hand with the African Union to ensure that there is restoration of consensus around the constitution in Niger,” Chambas said.

Deposed President Tandja and a majority of his cabinet are reportedly still being held by the mutinous soldiers at Tondibrah military camp, a training ground for new military recruits.

You May Like

Video Video Claims to Show Shi'ite Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

While not yet independently confirmed, brutal killing already has gotten attention of Islamic State followers on social media More

After Six Years, Little Change for Niger Delta's Former Militants

Nigerians who laid down arms in exchange for government amnesty subsidies fear program may end with upcoming presidential elections More

Vietnam Pushes for More Educated Drivers to Curb Road Deaths

Transportation officials hope that making a greater effort to get drivers to learn the rules of the road will reduce fatal crashes More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planeti
X
George Putic
March 04, 2015 8:51 PM
NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video African Americans Recall 1960's Fight For Voting Rights

U.S. President Barack Obama and thousands of people will gather in the small southern U.S. city of Selma, Alabama, Saturday, March 7th to commemorate the 50th anniversary of a historic voting rights march that became known as “Bloody Sunday." VOA’s Chris Simkins traveled to Alabama and introduces us to some of the foot soldiers of the voting rights struggles of the 1960’s.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Cyber War Rages Between Iran, US

A newly published report indicates Iran and the United States have increased their cyber attacks on each other, even as their top diplomats are working toward an agreement to guarantee Iran does not develop a nuclear weapon and to free Iran from international sanctions. The development is part of a growing global trend. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.
Video

Video Land Disputes Arise Amid Uganda Oil Boom

Ugandan police say there has been a sharp increase in land disputes, with 10 new cases being reported each day. The claims come amid an oil boom as investors appear to be cashing in by selling parcels of land to multiple buyers. Meanwhile, the people who have been living on the land for decades are chased away, sometimes with a heavy hand. VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
Video

Video In Russia, Many Doubt Opposition Leader's Killer Will Be Found

The funeral has been held in Moscow for Boris Nemtsov, the opposition leader who was assassinated late Friday just meters from the Kremlin. Nemtsov joins a growing list of outspoken critics of Russia under the leadership of President Vladimir Putin who are believed to have been murdered for their work. VOA’s Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Simulated Astronauts Get Taste of Mars, in Hawaii

For generations, people have dreamed of traveling to Mars to explore Earth's closest planetary neighbor. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports that while space agencies like NASA are planning manned missions to the planet, some volunteers in Hawaii are learning how humans will cope with months in isolation on a Mars base.
Video

Video Destruction of Iraq Artifacts Shocks Archaeologists

The city of Mosul was once one of the most culturally rich and religiously diverse cities in Iraq. That tradition is under attack by members of the Islamic State who have made Mosul their capital city. The Mosul Museum is the latest target of the group’s campaign of terror and destruction, and is of grave concern to archaeologists around the world. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video Smartphones May Help in Diagnosing HIV

Diagnosing infections such as HIV requires expensive clinical tests, making the procedure too costly for many poor patients or those living in remote areas. But a new technology called lab-on-a-chip may make the tests more accessible to many. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Refugees Complain of Harassment in Pakistan

Afghan officials have expressed concern over reports of a crackdown on Afghan refugees in Pakistan following the Peshawar school attack in December. Reports of mass arrests and police harassment coupled with fear of an uncertain future are making life difficult for a population that fled its homeland to escape war. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports from Islamabad.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More