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Monday, April 15, 2024

ECOWAS sanctions: Northern Senators Forum lauds restored regional relations

Residents in Niger Welcome the ease of Sanctions as ECOWAS Decision Reverberates Through West Africa

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The Northern Senators Forum has lauded the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) for its decision to lift the sanctions imposed on the Niger Republic, Mali, and Burkina Faso in the wake of military takeovers in the three countries, signaling a significant step towards regional stability and cooperation.

The move comes after the adamant military juntas in Niger, Burkina Faso, and Mali announced their withdrawal from ECOWAS, citing perceived deviations from the founding principles of the regional bloc and pan-Africanism.

In a momentous turn of events, ECOWAS, spurred by the intervention of Nigerian ex-military head of state Gen. Yakubu Gowon, announced the lifting of sanctions during its extraordinary session of the Heads of State and Government in Abuja, emphasizing the imperative of unity and security in the African sub-region.

The decision has been met with jubilation among Nigeriens, who express hope for an improved economic situation in their country following the lifting of some of the sanctions. The streets of Niger’s capital, Niamey, echoed with celebration, while in Tahoua, citizens marked the occasion with parades and joyful displays.

Despite the festivities, economist Hima Garba highlights the persisting challenges along Niger’s borders, plagued by violence and jihadist attacks, underscoring the arduous road ahead despite the lifted sanctions.

Senator Sumaila Kawu, speaking on behalf of the Northern Senators Forum, expressed gratitude to ECOWAS for heeding their pleas to restore electricity, open borders, and lift the sanctions on the Niger Republic. He emphasized the humanitarian significance of these measures and their potential to foster regional integration, trade, and cooperation.

The forum commended ECOWAS for its responsiveness and understanding of the challenges faced by West African nations, reiterating its commitment to promoting democracy, stability, and socio-economic development throughout the region.

Urging the Niger Republic junta to expedite the transition to democratic governance, the forum emphasized the importance of dialogue and peaceful solutions in addressing remaining concerns, advocating for a harmonious environment conducive to progress and development.

In conclusion, the Northern Senators Forum extended deep appreciation to ECOWAS leaders, particularly President Bola Ahmed Tinubu of Nigeria, for their proactive intervention, affirming their belief that this decision will resonate across West Africa as a testament to the power of dialogue and diplomacy in resolving differences and forging a path towards a brighter future.

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