The Parliament of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has reiterated its call for a diplomatic solution to the crisis in Niger, following the military coup that overthrew President Mohamed Bazoum on July 26.
The Parliament’s Ad-hoc committee on Niger stalemate met with the president of ECOWAS Commission, Omar Alieu Touray, on August 21 in Abuja, Nigeria, to discuss the situation.
A member of the Nigerian delegation to the ECOWAS Parliament, Senator Ali Ndume, said that the Parliament’s position on the crisis remained unchanged.
“We believe that a military intervention would be counterproductive and would only lead to more instability in Niger,” Ndume said. “We urge the junta to return to the negotiating table and find a peaceful solution to this crisis.”
The meeting with Touray was one of a number of diplomatic efforts being made by ECOWAS to resolve the crisis.
On August 12, the Parliament held a virtual meeting on the situation in Niger, where most members voted in favor of a diplomatic solution.
The ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State, however, has authorized the use of force to restore constitutional order in Niger.
Military chiefs from across the region have met to plan for a possible military intervention, but ECOWAS has said that it remains open to a diplomatic solution.
The Nigerien junta has so far resisted calls to restore constitutional order, but it has said that it is open to dialogue.
The ECOWAS Parliament has a long history of mediating political crises in West Africa. In 2010, the Parliament helped to broker a deal that restored constitutional order in Niger after a coup.
The Parliament has also played a key role in supporting democratic elections in West Africa. In 2023, the Parliament sent fact-finding missions to Nigeria and Sierra Leone to assess the preparations for their elections.
The Parliament’s efforts to resolve the crisis in Niger are part of its commitment to democracy and human rights in West Africa.
The Parliament has said that it will continue to work with ECOWAS and other partners to find a peaceful solution to the crisis.