As the two week ultimatum given to the military junta in Niger Republic to restore the ousted civilian President and Democratic order ended without the military bulging, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has fixed Thursday, August 10, for an extraordinary Summit to decide what to do next.
The meeting is expected to decide whether to send military to force out the new leader in Niger Republic or not.
Special Adviser to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on media and publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, who dropped the hint at a news briefing today, August 8, at the presidential villa, Abuja, confirmed that the extraordinary Summit will hold in Abuja on Thursday, August 10.
“It is therefore expected that at the extraordinary Summit, far reaching decisions will be taken concerning the next steps of the regional bloc, according to developments as they unfold.”
Ngelale stressed that the ultimatum given to the military Junta in Niger Public is an ECOWAS mandate, “and not a Nigerian ultimatum. It is not a Nigerian mandate, and the office of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, also serving as the chairman of ECOWAS, seeks to emphasize this point. ‘That due to certain domestic and international media coverage, tending toward a personalization of the ECOWAS sub regional position to his Preston and to our nation individually.
“It is because of this that Mr. president has deemed it necessary to state unequivocally that the mandate and ultimatum by issued ECOWAS is that of ECOWAS’s position. “While his excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has assumed the ECOWAS chairmanship, the position of ECOWAS conveys the consensus position of member heads of state. And a coup will not occur in one’s backyard, without one be particularly aware of it.
“The president in recent days, particularly following the expiration of the ultimatum given by ECOWAS, has widened consultations internationally but most especially domestically, including interfacing with state governors in Nigeria, who govern states bordering Niger public on the various fallouts and outcomes of the unfortunate situation that has unfolded in Niger Republic.
“But President Bola Ahmed Tinubu wishes to emphasize to this distinguished audience that the response of ECOWAS to the military coup in Niger has been and will remain devoid of ethnic and religious sentiments and considerations.
“The regional bloc is made up of all sub regional ethnic groups, religious groups, and all other forms of human diversity. And the response of ECOWAS, therefore, represents all of these groups, and not any of these groups individually.”
The Presidential spokesman said that so far, no options have been taken off the table until after the Abuja Summit on Thursday.