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Bola Tinubu, chairperson of ECOWAS

President Bola Tinubu has asked for a comprehensive consensus against the spread of “contagious autocracy” across Africa, in the wake of Wednesday’s military coup in Gabon.

Tinubu noted that he is committed to working with other heads of state to defend democracy on the continent.

He stated this in his first response to the early morning Wednesday coup in Gabon, according to a statement by the Presidential spokesperson, Ajuri Ngelale.

Gabon military officers had earlier on Wednesday, seized power, announcing that they had cancelled the elections, dissolved all state institutions and closed the country’s borders.

Ngelale, while Addressing State House correspondents, expressed Tinubu’s belief that the rule of law and a faithful recourse to the constitutional resolution of electoral disputes must not be allowed to perish in Africa.

“President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is watching developments in Gabon very closely with deep concern for the country’s sociopolitical stability and the seeming autocratic contagion apparently spreading across different regions of our beloved continent,” he said.

“The president, as a man who has made significant personal sacrifices in his own life, in the cause of advancing and defending democracy, has all of the unwavering belief that power belongs in the hands of Africa’s great people, and not in the barrel of a loaded gun.”

Ngelale added that Tinubu affirmed that “the rule of law and a faithful recourse to constitutional resolutions and instruments of electoral dispute resolution must not at any time be allowed to perish from our great continent”.

According to him, the President is “working very closely and continuing to communicate with other heads of state in the African Union towards a comprehensive consensus on the next steps forward with respect to how the crisis in Gabon will play out into how the continent will respond to the contagion of autocracy we are seeing spread across our continent”.



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