BREAKING: Mali Transition President Bah N’daou Sworn In

Mali’s has a new president five weeks after the overthrow of Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta.

Former Defence Minister Bah Ndaou, aged 70, was hand picked by the coup leader, Colonel Assimi Goita, to head a transitional government until elections, which are expected in 18 months.

Same Col. Goita will be his vice-president.

The appointment of a civilian president is a condition for the Economic Community of West African States – ECOWAS – to lift the sanctions it imposed after the coup.

ECOWAS considers the appointment of Mali’s interim president and vice president a step towards normalising life in the country after the recent coup.

The head of ECOWAS Delegation and former Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan, disclosed this on Friday in Mali.

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The military junta responsible for the coup in Mali, earlier this week appointed former Defence Minister Ba N’Daou as the transition president and Col. Assimi Goita as vice president.

They will both serve for 18 months before a new government is established.

“Ahead of Friday’s scheduled inauguration of the leaders of Mali’s transition government, the Ecowas mediation team today met with some stakeholders including Mr. Bah Ndaou, President-Designate and Col. Assimi Goita, President of the National Committee for the Salvation of the People (CNSP) and Vice President-Designate, both of who will be taking the oath of office at the official ceremony.

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“We are optimistic that this event will signal the beginning of the return to normalcy in Mali,” Goodluck Jonathan had written on Twitter on Thursday.

On Aug. 18, the military coup in Mali played out near the capital of Bamako and resulted in resignation of then – President Ibrahim Keita and his government.

The coup leaders established the CNSP, a governing body, until the transition government takes power.

Earlier in September, the 15-nation ECOWAS bloc urged the junta to appoint members of government for a transitional period until Sept. 23, saying it would otherwise impose a full embargo on the country.

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