Professor Kamilu Fagge has warned the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) that war is not an option in dealing with the Nigerien coupists that overthrew the government of President Mohamed Bazoum.
Mr Fagge urged the regional bloc to prioritise diplomatic solutions to resolve current impasse in the Niger Republic.
Mr Fagge, a political science lecturer at the Bayero University, Kano, made the call in an interview on Wednesday.
Following the July coup in Niger, the ECOWAS imposed series of sanctions on the junta and threatened military action if the coupists failed to restore Mr Bazoum to power.
“The best way is for the leaders to sit down to negotiate through diplomatic response to achieve an amicable political solution. In some cases you buttress your diplomacy with a show of force but the most stable way of resolving the crisis is through dialogue,” stated Mr Fagge.
The BUK intellectual added, “This is not the first time we are having similar things, there are a lot of instances when either ECOWAS, African Union or United Nations promote dialogue and negotiations between the coup leaders and the third force want to negotiate. And when you reach that conclusion sometimes it is so stable.
According to Mr Fagge, many calling for military attack on the Nigerien coupists, are guilty of staging coups in their countries.
“Some were military leaders who have now ‘civilianise’, some are civilians but they staged civilian coup by distorting the constitution, and by getting themselves into office for so many years. We have not exhausted all those options yet, we have to exhaust those options first before opting for war,” said Mr Fagge. “And in any case, war should not be an option.”
He stressed that democracy is important in the “eyes of the people” because it “engenders development” and it “is accountable to the people.”
Mr Fagge warned the conflict portends serious economic implications for Niger and the West African region, adding the closure of Nigeria’s borders with Niger Republic has compounded hunger and poverty.
“Nigeriens get most of their things here and Nigeria is also bearing the brunt of this decision. It has been estimated that Nigeria loses not less than N13 billion every week by stopping trade with Niger,” said the BUK professor. “And there are speculations that Nigeria and Niger trade is a formal trade that accounts for over N170 billion annually. While the informal trade between the two countries accounts for over N580 billion annually.”
Mr Fagge added, “So, when you put these things together, it range from N900 billion to about N1 trillion that we are going to lose in terms of trade. Most of the people to be affected are Nigeriens who are business people transacting all sorts of businesses with Nigeriens.”
This content contains 0 videos, 0 images, 4 links, 0 embeds, 463 words and was first published on NationWide Archives – Peoples Gazette