Malian transitional President, Bah Ndaw, and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane who were ousted in a coup on Monday have resigned, AFP reported a top junta aide and an international diplomat to have said.
The duo resigned during mediation efforts Wednesday, two days after the military arrested them and a day after they were stripped of their positions.
Messrs Ndaw and Ouane were on the verge of returning Mali to civil rule after the military struck the West African country in a coup in August.
Using weeks of demonstrations over perceived government corruption and handling of the ravaging insurgency as cover, young military officers led by Assimi Goïta, a colonel at the time, had ousted President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
The president would later resign, despite international calls on the military to hand power back to the civilians.
The putschists buckled to international pressure to set up an interim government that was to oversee a transition to civil rule by next March.
Yet, the junta held key positions in the government much to the consternation of opposition leaders and many citizens. Mr Goïta made himself the deputy president.
But nine months into the transition process, Mr Goïta and his army of soldiers struck again.
This followed a cabinet reshuffle that had two military officers replaced amidst lingering labour strikes in the landlocked country.
The junta took the president, the prime minister and the defence minister into custody in a military base in Kati just outside the capital, Bamako, relieving them of their duties.
A special advisor to Mr Goïta, Baba Cisse, accused the leaders in a live broadcast of “sabotage” in the transition quest of the country, promising an election by 2022.
Being the vice president in the transitional government, Mr Goïta said he should have been consulted before the cabinet shakeup reshuffle.
AFP said that a member of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) mediation mission has confirmed the president’s resignation to it.
The arrest of the leaders had drawn international demands for their release and threats of sanctions as mediators travelled to the poor Sahel country to broker their release.
Mr Cisse said negotiations were underway for their release and the formation of a new government in the poor Sahel country, AFP reported, adding that the leaders resigned “before the mediator.”
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