, ABUJA, Mar 28 – The Nigerian Senate in Abuja on Tuesday asked the military junta in Mali to hand over power to President Amadou Toure.
The Senate also called on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union, the United Nations and other international bodies to impose sanctions on Mali, should the junta fail to hand over power immediately.
The Nigerian Senate condemned the attempt to forcefully change the democratically-elected government of Toure, demanding the development be treated as an insurrection rather than a coup.
The Senate took these decisions after debating a motion moved by senior official Victor Ndoma-Egba on the need to commend the happenings in Senegal and condemn the mutiny in Mali.
The Senate leader said Mali had been highly rated as an African example of a thriving democracy.
He expressed regrets that Mali, which had been under civilian rule in the last 32 years, was now plunged into political crisis which had serious implications for the country.
On the situation in Senegal, Ndoma-Egba said the people of Senegal put aside religious and ethnic sentiments to vote for a president of their choice, adding that that was an example worth emulating by all African countries.
Senate President David Mark, before putting the motion to vote, stated that it was imperative for Nigeria to take the leadership position in the West African nation’s political imbroglio.
Mark said it was re-assuring that Chief of Army staff, Lt.-Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika had given the assurance that the Nigerian military would never stage a coup in the country again.