Sixty years since independence, Mali, once again, stands at crossroads.
The junta that overthrew Mali's president last month said Monday that former defense minister and retired Col. Maj. Bah N'Daw will be the president during the transition period.
The country has been reacting to the news
Ben Aly Toure a sociologist based in Bamako has this to say. "I would have liked us to choose a politician because Mali has been a democracy [for] almost 25 years, I think there are major actors who have the vision, who have the experience and who really have the rigour to lead this transition. But what we've seen is a pity"
For Nouhoum Fomba, the choice is a good one. "He is purely apolitical, that's why I'm happy. He is also a career soldier, several times Chief of Staff and has held high positions in the army. The fact that he studied in Russia opens the way to Russia too." Fomba explains
The would be interim president Bah N'Daw was appointed by a 30-person panel set up by the National Committee for the Salvation of the People (CNSP), the junta that has ruled Mali since soldiers overthrew President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita on Aug. 18.
He is expected to serve as head of state for several months before civilians return to power in the west African country
"Baba Dakona a Malian researcher thinks that there is basically no man for the situation in the country. ‘There are men who can do things. There are personalities who are less divisive, and I think he is one of the least divisive personalities in the country. But really the situation can only be resolved through a national awakening. Therefore, it will not be the president of the transition alone, but all the Malian political, civil and military actors to bring this transition to a successful conclusion."
The swearing-in ceremony for the new transition government which has Head of the Junta chief Col. Assimi Goïta as vice president, will take place on Friday, September 25.