During a presidential briefing on Tuesday, Ibrahim Keita, the President of Mali said he wanted to appoint the oppositions who lost their seats to the senate. He came to this decision with intensions to restore stability in Mali because of the current political tensions.
President Keita made this proposal following two major mass protests when civilians demanded his resignation. Dicko, an influential opposition leader steered the demonstrations after accusing President Keita of ignoring their demands.
Since 2012, Mali has been struggling with insecurity. Insurgencies from Islamic militia have increased and since then violence has spread to the center of Mali. This has promoted ethnic tensions. As a result, the life of Malians is always at risk. Not only civilians but also soldiers have lost their lives during the attacks.
The Malian government has been struggling to control Islamic insurgencies for a long time. It even became an ally with its colonizer to fight the jihadists. This terror group has rendered Mali and other West African states insecure. Most of the Malian citizens have become homeless after abandoning their homes due to the attacks.
Judging from the political tension, a flagging economy, and widespread corruption in Mali, most of the civilians do not support the president. Instead, they are frustrated under his rule and can’t wait for his retirement.
Mali’s constitutional court annul election results triggering political protest
The protests came in May after Mali had its legislative elections in April. It was then that President Keita retained office hence currently ruling for the second time. The Constitutional Court, in publishing the final results in April, annulled the victory of some 30 parliamentary candidates who had been declared elected in the provisional results proclaimed by the Ministry of Territorial Administration. This triggered protests as many enthusiasts marched in the streets and demanded equity.
The opposition even appealed demanding the court to annul the presidential results. However, the chair to the constitutional court rejected stating they hadn’t presented adequate evidence. The opposition didn’t take the rejection lightly.
“I am shocked by this decision,” said Zidane Ag Sidalamine, spokesman for Cisse. “The court did not accept any of our requests. We are waiting for a copy of the court’s judgment to see what steps need to be taken.”
Opposition demand their parliamentary seat
President Keita met with the candidates who had lost their seats and offered to appoint them in the senate. However, the candidates rejected his offer and stated they were not interested in the senatorial seat.
“We are the looted candidates. We want nothing but our seats as MPs, to go and represent our people in the assembly,” Ibrahim Kébé, one of these unhappy candidates, told AFP.
“We are the truly elected MPs. We told the president that we are not interested in the senate. We want our seats back as members of parliament,” added former candidate Adama Diarra, who attended the meeting.
Members of the High Islamic Council of Mali were also present and, they promised to continue with the discussions until they arrived at a consensus.