AU Commission chairperson demands end to unconstitutional changes of government in Africa

By Xinhua
On 1 August 2023 at 09:07

Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat has condemned recent waves of unconstitutional changes of government in Africa.

The AU Commission chief made the condemnation during an emergency meeting held on the situation in Niger by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the AU said late Sunday.

Condemning the latest coup in Niger, Faki said the situation goes far beyond the framework of Niger alone as it would have regional ramifications.

"The senseless nature of this coup, its flagrant violation of the principles of the AU and the serious and real threats it poses to the stability of the states of the region, mean that it must be resolutely fought," Faki said. "This coup, like all the unconstitutional changes by means of which the military installs itself in power, must completely cease."

Faki warned that failure to cease coups in Africa would be the best incentive for the multiplication of such harmful unconstitutional changes across the continent.

Before the AUC chief, Botswana also condemned the coup in Niger.

"The government of Botswana, in line with the Malabo Declaration on Terrorism and Unconstitutional Changes of Government in Africa, joins other Southern African Development Community (SADC) leaders and the rest of the world in strongly condemning the unconstitutional subversion of democracy in the Republic of Niger and calls for the immediate release of the constitutionally elected president of Niger, Mohamed Bazoum," said Botswana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a press release Saturday, urging all who are displeased with the situation to engage in peaceful negotiations in order to restore constitutional order in Niger.

On Sunday, the ECOWAS, which groups 15 countries, agreed to impose sanctions on Niger’s military leaders involved in the recent coup.

The regional bloc said in a statement that the military junta in Niger must cede power in a week and immediately release and reinstate the country’s elected president Mohamed Bazoum, or the ECOWAS will take all necessary measures, including the use of force, to restore constitutional order in Niger.