About fifteen West African heads of states and state officials have arrived in the country to attend the Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit being held in Accra.

They were welcomed by a delegation led by Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah.

According to Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey during an interaction with the press Saturday, President Akufo-Addo in his capacity as Chair of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and government decided to convene this extraordinary summit after due consultations with his peers.

West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit

The Summit is to enable the authority to deliberate and take consequential decisions on the evolving political and security situation in the Republic of Mali.

This, she explained, is in line with the ECOWAS protocol on democracy and good governance.

Some dignitaries present include General Umaro Sissoco Embaló from Guinea Bissau, President of Sierra Leone’s Julius Maada Bio, Cote D’lvoire’s Alassane Ouattara, the President of Gambia, Adana Barrow.

West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit

Others are Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, President of Burkina Faso, Marc Christian Kabore, Mohamed Bazoum, President of Niger, Colonel Assimi Goita from Mali, President of Liberia George Manneh Weah, President of Togo, Faure Essizimna Gnassingbe.

West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit
West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit

The Foreign Minister of Benin, Aurelian Agbennci, former President of Nigerian and ECOWAS mediator for Mali, Goodluck Jonathan have all arrived in the country.

Goodluck Jonathan will be expected to brief the summit of his findings when he led an ECOWAS mediation team to Mali from May 25 to 26 to assess the political situation.

West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit

Also present at today’s summit are the President of ECOWAS Commission; Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, and his Vice President Finda Koroma.

West African heads of states, state officials arrive in Accra for Extraordinary ECOWAS Summit

It is hoped that all the political actors in Mali will support the outcome of the Extraordinary Summit in order to restore constitutional order in Mali.

Mali’s political tension

The President, Prime Minister and Defence Minister of the Interim Mali government on Monday, May 24, were detained by military officers just months after a military coup ousted the previous administration.

President Bah Ndaw, Prime Minister, Moctar Ouane and Defence Minister Souleymane Doucoure were all taken to a military base in Kati outside the capital Bamako.

According to Mali’s interim Vice President, Colonel Assimi Goita, the arrest is due to the state official’s failure to consult him about the formation of a new government. But on Thursday, May 27, the arrested officials were released.