ECOWAS hits Mali with ‘final’ tough sanctions as junta proposed 5years mandate

West Africa’s regional bloc, ECOWAS has pulled what seems to be a final plug on Mali with heavy sanctions as the Country’s junta proposed to extend transitional period by five (5) years against the demands of ECOWAS that, elections should be held in February 2022.

In an extraordinary summit held in Accra Ghana on Sunday, 9th December 2022, ECOWAS issued tough sanctions whilst saying that, the newly proposed time by the Junta “simply means that an illegitimate military transition government will take the Malian people hostage.”

As part of the new sanctions, the regional bloc instructed member states to close all land and air borders with Mali, suspend non-essential financial transactions and freeze Malian state assets in ECOWAS central and commercial banks.

In a bid to make things tougher for Mali, West Africa’s Monetary and Economic Union (UEMOA) in a follow-up directed all financial institutions under its umbrella to suspend the country with immediate effect. The new sanctions will technically ground the economy of Mali.

This is not the first time the country is facing sanctions from ECOWAS. Delays in the return to constitutional rule by Colonel Assimi Goita and his team attracted earlier sanctions including the suspension of Mali’s membership, financial and travel bans were issued against major coup leaders and their relatives, among others.  

However, these seemingly final tough measures were triggered by the earlier proposal by the Junta backed forum, themed the “National Conference on Reform” which seek to extend transitional period by five years.

Documents from the forum said “the participants were in favor of extending the transition period in order to carry out the institutional reforms that will allow for credible, fair and transparent elections. The deadlines put forward vary from six months to five years.” Do you support ECOWAS on these sanctions or you believe in the junta to extend its mandate by five years?

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