I am deeply troubled about the events that unfolded and are currently unfolding in Niger Republic. These events have complications and implications for our nation.
President Tinubu has just indicated to the National assembly on ECOWAS’ proposed military action including penalties and sanctions against the coup participants in Niger Republic.
In the letter from the President, He informed the upper chamber that sanctions without exclusion to freezing utility services and closing land borders were imposed on Niger Republic at an emergency meeting.
Nigeria has an existing leadership role in West Africa. Most definitely, we must act. We as a nation should be very observant and cautious in our actions.
A military intervention in Niger would be resisted by the new military junta there as an invasion and as it stands it would be backed by Russia, China and possibly Mali or Burkina Faso. Nigeria is already messy enough to encroach in such events. It could turn out like what is currently happening in Ukraine.
Holistically, our economy can’t carry the cost of such interventions in Niger Republic. We are still in an economic quagmire due to the hike in petrol and other essentials. Nigerians are not living adequately enough, there was a nationwide protest just recently due to hardship across the nation. We still have the menace of Boko Haram and other internal insecurities.
It is also important to note that Niger’s coup is a part of a power tussle between the west and the others. Some have called likened it with a scramble for Africa.
Nigeria must be decisive at this point. The international community is very much aware of the occurrences and optimism aside, the world system deals more with selfish interests, especially at times of conflicts.
What are our options?
We must embrace dialogue and diplomatic tactics to deal with the present Niger Republic government. Obviously, we can’t fight fire with fire, in this context, a democratic solution must be upheld to restore democracy there. President Tinubu took a right step in appointing General Abdulsalami Abubakar who is an experienced international mediator to negotiate with the Niger junta.
The coups occurring in Africa’s Sahel region is a huge concern for us and other democracies. Also in dealing with these issues, we must look within.
British multinational drug-maker and biotechnology company, GlaxoSmithKline Plc (GSK) said Thursday that its operations in Nigeria will no longer involve commercialising its prescription drugs and vaccines. This is a major setback for our nation.
African countries in addressing potential conflicts or coups must embrace the real ethics of democracy which entails importance of the governed.
In all honesty, African leaders should treat this as a lesson which is essential for democracy to thrive in the continent.
Chinedum Anayo can be reached via email@example.com