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Mali crisis: Unity government to the rescue

• Jonathan’s ECOWAS mission recommends unity government to end Mali crisis

The ECOWAS Mediation Team led by former President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, has recommended the formation of a government of national unity with members drawn from different interest groups in the country, as a path to resolving the festering political crisis in the dry West African country.

The unity government would include the ruling coalition, the opposition parties and civil society organisations (CSOs), AbeyaNews has learnt.

The Commission also recommended the establishment of a technical committee to be set up by ECOWAS to monitor the implementation of the proposed measures, which also include the reconstitution of the dissolved constitutional court as well as the resolution of the dispute over 31 legislative seats recently set aside by the defunct constitutional court.

Jonathan who is ECOWAS Special Envoy to Mali  led his
mediation team on a three-day mission, which ended yesterday and  was aimed at finding a solution to the socio-political crisis in Mali.

In a communique issued at a press conference in Bamako yesterday, the Mission stated: “As a matter of urgency, there is the need to put in place a government of national unity, based on consensus and taking into account the recommendations of the Inclusive National Dialogue, the implementation of the Mali Peace and Reconciliation Agreement resulting from the Algiers process.”

According to the document, the proposed government will have 50
per cent of its members drawn from the ruling coalition while the
opposition and civil society groups will produce 30 per cent and 20
percent of its membership, respectively.

The communique signed by Dr. Jonathan added that “a Technical
Committee will be put in place by ECOWAS to monitor and follow up on the implementation of the proposed measures. This Committee will comprise representatives of the government, parliament, civil society, the Judiciary, women and youth associations, and the ECOWAS Representation in Mali.”

While in Bamako, the Mission, which was in Mali one month after the
visit of ECOWAS Ministerial Mission, held consultations with different
stakeholders, including President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, Prime
Minister Boubou Cisse, Imam Mahmoud Dicko, members of the M5-RFP collatio , the majority coalition in Parliament, judges, heads of
international agencies, diplomats, members of Civil Society as well as
women and youth groups.

While many stakeholders and interest groups welcomed the proposed unity government, it is not however clear whether members of the opposition backed M5 coalition will be part of it, as they continued to insist on the resignation of President Keita among other tough demands during the many meetings they had with the Jonathan-led team.

The Mission urged Malians not to take laws into their hands, reminding them of  the importance of respecting their institutions,
“particularly the constitutional means of ascending to power, in
conformity with the ECOWAS Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance.

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