The Oasis Reporters
July 24, 2020
For five months or thereabout, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari has been in the country, quite unusual compared to his first four year tenure. But just yesterday he traveled to Bamako, the capital of Mali soon after his meeting with former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan who has been on a diplomatic shuttle to find peace in the French speaking Mali.
The synergy between the two quintessential gentlemen was so great despite what their followers and foot soldiers might want to believe.
I arrived Bamako this morning, the second time I will be visiting Mali with my @ecowas_cedeao team on a mediation mission in a week. Today, we're being joined by five West African Heads of State who are visiting Mali to hold further consultations with Malian stakeholders.— Goodluck E. Jonathan (@GEJonathan) July 23, 2020
President Muhammadu Buhari arrived in Mali on a one-day visit aimed at finding a political solution to the crisis in the country.
The President was seen wearing a face mask publicly for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic.
The President’s arrival was confirmed in a tweet by his personal assistant on new media, Bashir Ahmad.
According to an earlier statement by the Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the President, Femi Adesina, Buhari’s planned visit followed the briefing by the ECOWAS Special Envoy to the country, former President Goodluck Jonathan.
The statement adds that President Buhari and the ECOWAS Chairman, President Issoufou Mahamadou of Niger Republic had already agreed to meet in Mali to engage in further consultations towards finding a political solution to the crisis in the country.
The two leaders were joined by the Host President, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Presidents Machy Sall of Senegal, Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire respectively.
“We will ask the President of Niger, who is the Chairman of ECOWAS to brief us as a group, and we will then know the way forward,” President Buhari was quoted as saying.
Peace in Mali is acutely critical to peace and stability in Nigeria’s Middle belt region because a good majority of the Fulani herdsmen militia that wreck unprecedented damage to the Middle belt and the rest of Nigeria in crimes ranging from Kidnap for ransom, wanton killings and displacements leading to food insecurities as farmers are displaced to inhospitable refugee camp as IDPs bring their torment from upper West Africa. One of their epicenters is Mali.
Therefore unless they find peace and security in their homeland, Nigeria will not sleep with two eyes closed.
It is noteworthy that Goodluck Ebele Jonathan flew back to Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city and immediately went in to brief Muhammadu Buhari. And the president jetted off to Mali.
Perfect synergy there, between an ex president who is acutely aware that he is now a private citizen and elder statesman, unlike what is playing out in Benin City, capital of Edo State between an ex governor who desperately wants to be godfather and ruler by remote control because he has a big ego, like Malian politicians leading West Africa into unprecedented crisis.