A former military head of state of Nigeria, Abdulsalami Abubakar, and the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Saad-Abubakar III, have both arrived in Niger and are currently facing a military invasion and power takeover.
They arrived in Niamey, Niger’s state capital, via a Nigerian presidential Air Force jet.
This was disclosed in a statement issued by Ajuri Ngelale, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, on Thursday.
According to the statement, the Nigerian leaders were dispatched by President Bola Tinubu with a mandate to expeditiously resolve the current political impasse in the country.
The statement further said that the move was in accordance with the decision made at the conclusion of the ECOWAS emergency summit, which took place on Sunday in Abuja.
The News.ng, however, understands that they are representing the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) as special envoys for peace talks with the coupists.
Messrs Abdulsalami and Abubakar are both members of the Nigerian National Peace Committee, NPC, a non-governmental organisation with parts of its mandate to support free, fair and credible elections in Nigeria.
Military officers had deposed President Mohammed Bazoum’s democratic government in the Niger Republic and immediately placed him on house arrest at the state Presidential palace in Niamey.
According to reports, the soldiers took over state television and called the West African country’s operation a success.
In reaction, President Tinubu quickly dismissed the threat to democracy in Niger and dispatched a big delegation to engage with all parties in order to restore constitutional order.
Similarly, the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government met in Abuja on Sunday and ordered Mr Bazoum’s immediate release and reinstatement as the Republic of Niger’s legitimate Head of State and Government.
The News.ng had reported how US Vice President Kamala Harris and United State Secretary of State Antony Blinken communicated with President Tinubu separately praising him for leading efforts to restore constitutional order in the Republic of Niger, which is currently dealing with an army-led revolution.
Both leaders voiced their support for President Tinubu’s ongoing efforts to restore constitutional order in Niger. President Tinubu was recently elected as the Chairman of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State.