Malian Constitutional Court appoints coup leader Assimi Goita as president

Following the release of the deposed president and his prime minister by the coup plotters
AFP/MICHELE CATTANI-En esta foto de archivo tomada el 18 de septiembre de 2020, el coronel Assimi Goita (C), presidente del CNSP (Comité Nacional para la Salvación del Pueblo).

AFP/MICHELE CATTAN  -   file photo taken on 18 September 2020, Colonel Assimi Goita (C), chairman of the CNSP (National Committee for the Salvation of the People).

The Malian Constitutional Court validated the coup leader Assimi Goita, the protagonist of last Monday's coup, as the new president of the Republic, replacing the ousted president, Bah Ndaw.

In this way, the Court aims to give a semblance of legality to Monday's coup in Bamako, staged by the same coup leaders who deposed the then president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita (IBK) last August.

In its efforts to legalise the new authorities, the Court is relying on the resignation presented by Bah Ndaw on Monday, in unclear circumstances, given that he was detained in a military compound throughout the day and was only released on Thursday.

AFP/MICHELE CATTANI  -   El presidente de la transición de Mali, Bah Ndaw, durante su ceremonia de investidura en el CICB (Centro Internacional de Conferencias de Bamako) en Bamako
AFP/MICHELE CATTANI  -   Mali's transitional president, Bah Ndaw, during his inauguration ceremony at the CICB (International Conference Centre of Bamako) in Bamako.

According to the Court, the resignation created a power vacuum that needed to be filled immediately, and according to the laws of the Transitional Charter in force in Mali during this transitional period, the person authorised to replace a president is, first and foremost, his vice-president, in this case Colonel Assimi Goita.

It remains to be seen how the new president and the procedure for his appointment will be received by the Malian people, but above all by the Community of West African States (ECOWAS), to which Mali belongs and which has been determined since last August to impose a transitional period on Mali in order to hand over power to civilians.