Military Coup: Keita Steps Down as President of Mali
Stepped down, now ex-president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, from his position as Malian head of state.
The televised broadcast of his official statement, “I would like at this precise moment, while thanking the Malian people for their support, warmth and affection throughout these long years, to inform you of my decision to step down from all my functions, from this very moment onward.”
The 4th Military Coup in Malian History
His decision was announced just before midnight Tuesday on the country’s national TV station The Office of Radio and Television of Mali (ORTM). A banner across the bottom of the television screen already-referring to him as the “outgoing president.”
This came following hours of gunshots fired into the air by army mutineers outside his private residence where he and the prime minister, Boubou Cissé, were detained by soldiers — a military could d’état which certain sources suppose were headed by Colonel Malik Diaw.
A public address, hours afterwards on the same media channel, was given by the self-declared and newly created National Committee for the Salvation of the People, who are presumed to be behind the coup d’etat.
Spokesperson, Ismael Wague, stated the military intention is for a smooth civil political transition with general elections foreseen within a reasonable time frame.
“He just resigned live on ORTM TV!”
Keita’s resignation effective immediately, comes after months of opposition protests calling for him to be removed from office three years before the end of his final term. His associated government and appointed National Assembly will also be dissolved and The Economic Community of West African States has consequently closed its member states’ borders to the nation.
The badgered former president expressed that his decision to step down was to avoid bloodshed for his cause as Mali enters its 4th military coup in its history.
A dramatic turn of events that might not have Keita’s seemingly-desired quelling effect on the political crisis amid an eight-year Islamic insurgency and the growing covid-19 pandemic.