ECOWAS sent 250 observers to Mali.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on Thursday declared the first round of elections in Mali free and fair.
The ECOWAS Commission President, Ambassador Kadre Ouedraogo said this while speaking with journalists at the formal signing of an MOU with contributing countries of African-led International Support Mission to Mali (AFISMA) in Abuja.
Mr. Ouedraogo congratulated “the Malian government and people for what we consider a successful election.
“ECOWAS was there with 250 observers led by the former President of Ghana, John Kuffor.
“We sent a delegation and they reported back and I’m in a position to assure you that ECOWAS believes that this election has been free and fair,” he said
Mr. Ouedraogo said that he was confident on the ability of the government to “deal with the challenges facing the Malian people”.
He also reiterated the bloc’s commitment to ensuring the economic development of the country.
The president said that a parallel force would be on ground to support the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali (MINUSMA).
“The force will be here to support in case there is a terrorist attack; everything is in order to keep peace and security in Mali,” he said further.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the conduct of the July 28 presidential election in Mali has been described as peaceful and orderly by most observers.
Ibrahim Boubacar Kéita, the candidate of the Rally for Mali (RPM), was reported to have taken the lead in the election with one-third of the votes declared.
A second round is expected to be held between the first two candidates if no candidate wins more than 50 per cent of the votes in the first round.
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