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Niger Coup d’etat: Adopt diplomacy, not military action – Rights group tells ECOWAS

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A human rights group, Centre for Human Rights and Accountability Network (CHRAN) has advised the chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and President of Nigeria, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to adopt diplomacy, deliberations, negotiations and compromise in resolving the political quagmire in Niger Republic and not using military approach.

In a statement jointly signed by its Director and Deputy Director, Otuekong Franklyn Isong and Comrade Vincent Aluu, and made available to journalists in Uyo on Monday, deploying military action may adversely affect the human rights of innocent civilians in Niger Republic and pose a long-term dire consequences to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and West African region at large, even as it condemned in strong terms the action of the military against the democratically elected President of the country, calling for immediate return to democratic governance in Niger Republic.

The centre commended the steps taken so far by the ECOWAS leadership in the matter, but

The centre, however, cautioned that “Military intervention may lead to collateral damages, killing of unarmed civilians, destruction of lives and properties and most likely result in an ideological war involving some world powers against African countries.

“In restoring democracy, ECOWAS should consider the immediate and long-term implications of its actions on the people of the Niger Republic and the wider West African sub-region.”

The centre observed that bad governance on the part of civilian leaders has brought about recent military takeovers in some of the African countries, advising civilian presidents in the African countries to learn from these unfortunate developments by promoting good governance, the rule of law, and being accountable to their people in order to win the confidence and trust of their citizens and by so doing, discourage military coup d’etat in African countries.

The CHRAN called on the ECOWAS chairman and President of Nigeria to put the interest, safety and wellbeing of Nigerians into consideration before taking any foreign policy decision, adding that military onslaught against the Nigerien military junta will put the lives of Nigerians residing along border towns and business interests of Nigerian entrepreneurs in grave danger.

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