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Gambia: Buhari begins actualisation of ECOWAS mandate

Gambia: Buhari begins actualisation of ECOWAS mandate

Gambia

President Muhammadu Buhari has activated the process for the execution of his task as he discharges his mandate as the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) mediator for The Gambia.

One of the outcomes of the just-concluded ECOWAS Summit held on December 17, 2016 in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja was the decision to designate President Muhammadu Buhari as the Mediator for The Gambia with John Mahama, the out- going President of Ghana as Co-Mediator.

On the direction of the President, Nigeria’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, is leading a Mediation Support Team (MST), working with the team of the Co-Mediator, President Mahama.

The committee has begun immediate consultations with leaders in the sub-region as well as with international partners.

On the direction of the President, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, is leading a Mediation Support Team (MST), working with the team of the Co-Mediator, President Mahama. The committee has begun immediate consultations with leaders in the sub-region as well as with international partners.

The main task of the Mediation Support Team is to undertake the first phase of the preparatory and support work that would lead to a high level meeting of the Mediator (President Buhari) and the stakeholders.

Buhari remains optimistic that a peaceful resolution in line with the laws and constitution of the Gambia is possible before January 19.

However, Gambia’s President Yahya Jammeh recently said the Economic Community of West African States’s decision to send troops into The Gambia to force him to accept defeat in last month’s presidential election, is “a declaration of war”.

ECOWAS had said it would stage a military intervention, led by neighbouring Senegal, if Jammeh failed to step down and set a deadline of January 19, the day of Barrow’s planned inauguration.

Jammeh, has accused West African regional body, of declaring war against his country for refusal to step down at the end of his mandate this month.

He promised to defend Gambia against any outside aggression.

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