Security Analyst and Executive Director of the Africa Center for Human Security and Emergency Management (ACHSEM) Bill Godson Ocloo says, the proposed deployment of ECOWAS standby military forces to intervene in the Niger crisis would have counterproductive consequences for the sub region.
He has therefore recommended a more strategic and diplomatic approach in tackling the crisis in the ECOWAS member nation.
In an interview with Newsmen in Accra, Bill Ocloo said, he fully supports the concerns of ECOWAS on the Coup d’etat in Niger as it poses a threat to regional stability “however, he respectfully disagrees with the proposed deployment of ECOWAS standby troops as a means of restoring constitutional order in that country.”
The ACHSEM Founder and Executive Director believes that such a move would have counterproductive consequences, further exacerbating the already precarious situation in Niger.
“The Coup leaders are likely to interpret the presence of the standby forces as an act of provocation, potentially escalating violence,” he observed.
Bill Ocloo urged ECOWAS to concentrate it’s efforts on offering a strategic mediation role for early restoration of democracy to Niger as the Coup leaders are strongly backed by the citizenry.
“ECOWAS must first of all look into the conditions leading to the Coup d’etat and assure the Coup leaders of it’s firm resolve to ensuring reversal of the country’s economic sovereignty to the people from the Colonial masters – It is of paramount importance that ECOWAS provides humanitarian aid to the affected population of Niger who might have endured significant suffering due to the current situation,” he advised.
He further emphasized the utmost need for collaboration between ECOWAS and the international community in addressing the root causes of such Coups, including Poverty, Corruption, Nepotism and the denial of Sovereignty and Human Rights and limited opportunities to the citizenry, adding that by effectively resolving these underlying factors that largely form the basis of Coup d’etats in Africa, ECOWAS can play a pivotal role in preventing future Coups, not only in Niger, but also in other countries on the continent.
The Security Analyst urged all stakeholders to prioritize peace, stability, prosperity and the well-being of the people of Niger and the entire ECOWAS region while remaining committed to advocating peaceful and diplomatic solutions to the Niger situation.