West African leaders have demanded that Mali “immediately” appoint civilians to the roles of interim president and prime minister after the military took power during a recent coup.
The nomination of “these two key personalities will be done immediately,” the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) urged in a statement late on Tuesday, at the end of a one-day mini-summit held in Ghana’s capital Accra.
Former Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan, who leads the mediation on behalf of ECOWAS, will fly to Mali for a week to oversee the implementation of a transitional government, the statement read.
ECOWAS’ demands come after the junta, which calls itself the National Committee for the People’s Salvation (CNSP), on Saturday announced a road map stating that the transitional president and vice president are to be selected by a special council set up by the military junta.
The road map was a day later rejected by the opposition coalition M5-RFP movement that was key in mobilizing demonstrations that led to the coup.
The M5-RFP described the document as a power grab by the ruling junta, saying it allowed for the possibility of the interim government being overseen by someone from the military until elections are held.
The military junta overthrew President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita’s government on August 18 after months of anti-government protests, mainly led by the M5-RFP.