After the failure of diplomatic intervention to get putschists who seized power in the Niger Republic to relinquish power, President Bola Tinubu, Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), wrote to the National Assembly to inform them about plans to deploy troops to the French-speaking West African country.
He stated this in an official communication addressed to Godswill Akpabio, the Senate and read at plenary by the president of the Senate.
WikkiTimes had earlier reported that a leaked document showed how the federal government is planning to deploy troops to Sokoto, a Nigerian state sharing a border with the coup-torn country.
ECOWAS had sanctioned and threatened to invade the Niger if the putschists refused to revert power to the ousted civilian government of President Mohamed Bazoum within a week.
But the military junta rejected the warning and unanimously said: “We want to once more remind ECOWAS or any other adventurer of our firm determination to defend our homeland.”
The coup plotters went ahead to seek Russia’s help as ECOWAS considers military intervention. They said they seized power as a result of “bad governance and worsening security.”
Yesterday, Nigerian emissaries led by retired General Abdulsalami Abubakar met with the coup plotters to persuade them to sheathe their swords, but there are strong indications that the peace dialogue ended in a deadlock.
Following their visit, the military junta in Niger severed ties with Nigeria, Togo, France, its coloniser, and the United States.
“The functions of the extraordinary and plenipotentiary ambassadors of the Republic of Niger” to France, Nigeria, Togo and the United States are terminated,” Radio France International quoted one of the putschists to have said on national television.
Bazoum was ousted by its presidential guards led by Abdourahamane Tiani [now Head of State]. The country’s military later declared support for the coup d’état, claiming it was in its efforts to prevent massive bloodletting.