Naija News reports that President Buhari will be on a one-day visit to Mali “following the briefing by the ECOWAS Special Envoy to the country, former President Goodluck Jonathan.”
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, who disclosed this in a statement, explained further that Buhari and some ECOWAS leaders would meet in Bamako as part of efforts to broker peace in that country’s political crisis.
The statement said: “The Nigerian President and some ECOWAS leaders led by the Chairman of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the sub-regional organisation, President Issoufou Mahamadou of Niger Republic, agreed to meet in Mali to engage in further consultations towards finding a political solution to the crisis in the country.
“Host President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Presidents Machy Sall of Senegal, Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire are expected to participate in the Bamako meeting.”
Adesina recalled in the statement that former President Jonathan was at the Villa in company with the President of ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, on Tuesday to brief Buhari on the unfolding situation in Mali, necessitating the visit of ECOWAS leaders to consolidate on the agreements reached by various parties.
“We will ask the President of Niger, who is the Chairman of ECOWAS to brief us as a group, and we will then know the way forward,” Buhari had stated after receiving a report from Jonathan.
The President thanked Jonathan for his comprehensive brief on the situation in Mali, “which you had been abreast with since when you were the sitting Nigerian President.”
On his part, the former President had filled in President Buhari on his activities as Special Envoy to restore amity to Mali, rocked by protests against President Keita, who has spent two out of the five years the second term in office.
Meanwhile, Naija News reports that the visit will be coming at a time a resistance group, M5, is insisting that the Constitutional Court must be dissolved, and the President resign before peace can return to the country.
The crisis had erupted after the court nullified results of 31 parliamentary seats in the polls held recently, awarding victory to some other contenders, which the resistance group said was at the instigation of President Keita.
July 10 riots n the country had led to the killing of some protesters by security agents, causing the crisis to spiral out of control, hence the intervention by ECOWAS.