Home African News Mali opposition rejects junta-backed transition charter

Mali opposition rejects junta-backed transition charter

Mali coup: Opposition rejects transition deal as 'power grab'
A committee chosen by the junta, which was overseeing the talks, adopted the final version of the charter by acclamation on Saturday.

Mali’s popular opposition movement has rejected a charter for a transition government backed by the ruling army officers who ousted president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

The military junta backed a charter for an 18-month transition government on Saturday, after a three-day forum with political parties and civil-society representatives.

But the June 5 Movement, which took part in the talks, later rejected the roadmap in a statement, and accused the junta of a “desire to monopolise and confiscate power”.

It also said that the discussions had taken place against a backdrop of “intimidation, antidemocratic and unfair practices worthy of another era”.


Conclusions from forum working groups were not reflected in the final document, the June 5 Movement said, pointing for example to broad support for a civilian transition president.

A committee chosen by the junta, which was overseeing the talks, adopted the final version of the charter by acclamation on Saturday.

Either a civilian or a military officer can become transition president, the committee’s rapporteur told delegates.

AFP has not seen the final version of the charter.

However, an earlier version seen on Saturday stipulated that a junta-appointed committee would pick the transition president, raising questions about the military’s influence.

The June 5 Movement is a loose coalition of opposition groups, religious leaders and civil figures who organised a months-long wave of protests against President Keita, which led up to his ouster and arrest in a military coup on August 18.

Some seats in the 121-person legislature foreseen in the charter are reserved for members of the movement.


What happened to the former president?

The ousted former president left the country last week.
The 75-year-old former leader flew to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on 5 September for medical treatment, after suffering a minor stroke, military officials said.
His former chief of staff said he could be away for up to 15 days.
After the coup, West African leaders said they wanted a rapid return to civilian rule. Mali’s new military rulers had previously said they wanted the interim period to last for two years.
“We make a commitment before you to spare no effort in the implementation of all these resolutions in the exclusive interest of the Malian people,” Col Assimi Goita, the head of Mali’s military junta, said.
President Keïta was overthrown on 18 August following mass protests against his rule over corruption, the mismanagement of the economy and a dispute over legislative elections.
The coup sparked international condemnation, but it was welcomed by many Malians.
Mr Keïta was detained by the military, but later freed.
File photo of ousted ex-President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta
This was the fourth coup in the West African state since it gained independence from France in 1960.
A previous coup in 2012 led to militant Islamists exploiting the instability to seize territory in northern Mali. French troops helped regain territory, but attacks continue.
The coup leaders earlier promised to respect international agreements on fighting jihadists.
Thousands of French, African and UN troops are based in the country to tackle the militants.