Graduates of the Senior Executive Course of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) Kuru, under the auspices of the
Alumni Association of the National Institute of Nigeria (AANI), has expressed support for the punitive measures taken so far by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) against the new military dispensation in Niger Republic after a military coup d’etat, but cautioned against armed invasion of the country.
A statement today, August 6, by its National Publicity Secretary, retired Brigadier General Sani Kukasheka Usman, said that the Association strongly condemned the military seizure of power in the Niger Republic even as it supported the efforts of ECOWAS’ efforts towards restoring democracy in the country.
“However, in restoring democracy, ECOWAS should consider the immediate and long-term implications of its actions on the people of the Niger Republic and the wider West African sub-region.”
AANI said that addressing the root causes of the political crisis in the Niger Republic and strengthening the democratic institutions in the country is vital to achieving lasting peace and stability in the region.
“AANI, therefore, urges caution against immediate military action. Instead, non-military options like diplomatic pressure and economic sanctions should be adopted towards a peaceful resolution and a quicker return to democratic governance in the Niger Republic.
“Military action by ECOWAS may escalate the current situation into a humanitarian crisis and worsen the security challenges in the West African sub-region. It may also escalate tensions in the fragile security situation in the Lake Chad region and other parts of West Africa, attracting other armed groups and external actors to take advantage of it. This would exacerbate the security challenges and create a more complex and dangerous situation. “It is, therefore, essential to prioritise peaceful and diplomatic solutions to the political crisis.
“ECOWAS should upscale diplomatic efforts to persuade the military leaders in Niger to relinquish power and allow the democratically elected government to reclaim the people’s mandate.
“By avoiding military intervention, ECOWAS would have demonstrated commitment to peaceful conflict resolution and regional stability.
“AANI believes that finding durable solutions to the prevailing political crisis in Niger Republic lies in prioritising the well-being of the civilian population and upholding the principles of democracy, human rights, and regional cooperation within ECOWAS.
“Its only through peaceful means that ECOWAS can ensure a sustainable and prosperous future for the people of Niger Republic and the broader West African community.”