Burkina Faso considering 30-month transition following coup

Burkina Faso is considering a 30-month transitional period to elections following a military coup in January, a source at the presidency said on Wednesday after a commission tasked with making proposals handed its report to the ruling junta.

Lieutenant-Colonel Paul-Henri Damiba, who ousted President Roch Marc Kabore on January 24, appointed the commission two weeks ago to propose a draft charter and roadmap for the transitional period.

The mooted two-and-a-half year transition echoed the junta’s guideline that said it needed around two years to stabilise the country and organise elections, said the source, who asked to remain anonymous as he was not authorised to speak publicly.

Lt Col Damiba received the report from the commission and thanked the members for respecting the time frame, but did not divulge the contents during a short ceremony.

The commission also proposed a transitional government in the West African country of up to 20 ministers, and a transitional legislative body of 51 members, added the source who had seen the report.

A military junta that seized power in Burkina Faso last week has shown willingness to work towards a return to constitutional order, leaders of West Africa’s regional bloc said on Thursday.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has asked the junta to rapidly propose an election timetable, the President of ECOWAS Commission said.

The heads of state who met in Ghana’s capital, Accra, said they regretted that another junta in neighbouring Mali was yet to present an acceptable path to return to constitutional order, which could lead to the easing of sanctions.

ECOWAS Commission President, Jean Claude Kassi Brou, told a news conference there was no need to impose more sanctions against the military that ousted Burkina Faso’s former President, Roch Marc Kabore.

“We have engaged them and they have shown interest that they want to work with ECOWAS towards the restoration of constitutional order,” Brou said.

“Since they have shown the ability to work with ECOWAS, we can’t just impose the maximum sanctions,” he added.

Ghana’s President, Nana Akufo-Addo, at the start of the summit said that the coup in Mali was “contagious” and had set a dangerous trend that has led to subsequent coups in the region.

“Let us address this dangerous trend collectively and decisively before it devastates the entire region,” Akufo-Addo said. -Reuters

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