News

ECOWAS Condemns Military ‘Adventurism’ in Mali

Renegade Malian soldiers appear on television at the ORTM television studio in Bamako, March 22, 2012 still image taken from video.
Renegade Malian soldiers appear on television at the ORTM television studio in Bamako, March 22, 2012 still image taken from video.
Peter Clottey

An official of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) says the sub-regional bloc will not tolerate “military adventurism” after mutinous soldiers toppled Mali President Amadou Toumani Toure.

Communications director Sonny Ugoh said the crisis in Mali undermines ECOWAS’ efforts at promoting peace, political stability and democracy in West Africa.

“The regional leaders agree that the train of democracy is irreversible for us, and we will not allow adventurists to turn the hands of the clock backwards,” said Ugoh. “This is essentially the basis for the protocol or democracy and good governance, which is an extension on the mechanism of intervention, resolution and peacekeeping and regional security.”

Ugoh said the sub-regional bloc will continue with its efforts to entrench democracy in West Africa.

Ugoh said ECOWAS has begun consultations with its local and international partners to decide its next line of action.

“We are concerned about this latest affront to democratic governance in West Africa,” said Ugoh. “Regional leaders are consulting to see how best to respond to it, because that goes against the grain of all the instruments that ECOWAS members have signed. [This is particularly true regarding] democracy and good governance, where we agreed categorically, to not allow ascension to power obtained through this kind of means.

The mutinous soldiers say they acted because of the president's incompetence in fighting a rebellion by ethnic Tuaregs in Mali's north.

But Ugoh said the soldiers “jumped the gun” after saying ECOWAS was preparing a mediation team to help broker a ceasefire in Mali before Wednesday’s coup d’état.

“The president of the commission Desire Ouedraogo led a fact finding mission that returned from Mali where they held consultations, all with the intention of starting a process that would hopefully lead to a negotiated resolution of the crisis in the north of Mali,” said Ugoh.

He said the coup d’état exacerbates the country’s security problem.

Mali was scheduled to go to the polls on April 29th to elect a new president to take over from President Amadou Toumani Toure.

But, analysts doubt the vote will proceed as originally planned.

Ugoh expressed optimism it will be held as scheduled, despite the overthrow of the government.

“We are hopeful the election will hold…the citizens are perfectly entitled to vote in an election, and it is their responsibility therefore by voting to determine a government of their choice,” said Ugoh. “It is not that any time anybody disagrees with the government then he mobilizes some disgruntled people and then takes over the reins of government.”

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.
Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam Wari
X
Katherine Gypson
May 25, 2015 1:32 AM
For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Rolling Thunder Run Reveals Changed Attitudes Towards Vietnam War

For many US war veterans, the Memorial Day holiday is an opportunity to look back at a divisive conflict in the nation’s history and to remember those who did not make it home.
Video

Video Female American Soldiers: Healing Through Filmmaking

According to the United States Defense Department, there are more than 200-thousand women serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.  Like their male counterparts, females have experiences that can be very traumatic.  VOA's Bernard Shusman tells us about a program that is helping some American women in the military heal through filmmaking.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.
Video

Video On Film: How Dance Defies Iran's Political Oppression

'Desert Dancer' by filmmaker Richard Raymond is based on the true story of a group of young Iranians, who form an underground dance troupe in the Islamic Republic of Iran. This is the latest in a genre of films that focus on dance as a form of freedom of expression against political oppression and social injustice. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Turkey's Ruling Party Trying to Lure Voters in Opposition Stronghold

Turkey’s AK (Justice and Development) Party is seeking a fourth successive general election victory, with the goal of securing two-thirds of the seats in Parliament to rewrite the constitution and change the country's parliamentary system into a presidential one. To achieve that, the party will need to win seats in opposition strongholds like the western city of Izmir. Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video Millions Flock to Ethiopia Polls

Millions of Ethiopians cast their votes Sunday in the first national election since the 2012 death of longtime leader Meles Zenawi. Mr. Meles' party, the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, is almost certain of victory again. VOA's Anita Powell reports from Addis Ababa.
Video

Video Scientists Testing Space Propulsion by Light

Can the sun - the heart of our solar system - power a spacecraft to the edge of our solar system? The answer may come from a just-launched small satellite designed to test the efficiency of solar sail propulsion. Once deployed, its large sail will catch the so-called solar wind and slowly reach what scientists hope to be substantial speed. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video FIFA Trains Somali Referees

As stability returns to the once lawless nation of Somalia, the world football governing body, FIFA, is helping to rebuild the country’s sport sector by training referees as well as its young footballers. Abdulaziz Billow has more from Mogadishu.
Video

Video With US Child Obesity Rates on the Rise, Program Promotes Health Eating

In its fifth year, FoodCorps puts more than 180 young Americans into 500 schools across the United States, where they focus on teaching students about nutrition, engaging them with hands-on activities, and improving their access to healthy foods whether in the cafeteria or the greater community. Aru Pande has more.
Video

Video Virginia Neighborhood Draws People to Nostalgic Main Street

In the U.S., people used to grow up in small towns with a main street lined by family-owned shops and restaurants. Today, however, many main streets are worn down and empty because shoppers have been lured away by shopping malls. But in the Del Ray neighborhood of Alexandria, Virginia, main street is thriving. VOA’s Deborah Block reports it has a nostalgic feel with its small restaurants and unique stores.

VOA Blogs