After joining forces with the military to overthrow former Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, members of the June 5 Movement – Rassemblement des Forces Patriotiques – have failed to agree on the nature of the transitional government.
Some of the several political parties and associations that make up the movement are of the opinion that the transitional period ought to be led by a military president and prime minister. Others have, however, moved for a civilian-led transition.
Leaders of Malikoura, a member organisation of the June 5 movement, said the military should be kept in power for an 18-month transitional period.
According to Tahirou Bah, one of the movement’s leaders, “Within the M5-RFP – Assembly of Patriotic Forces, most of the youths want a transition led by a soldier to continue to play the role of an arbiter.”
To prove their support to the military and to encourage them to remain in power, thousands of youths yesterday gathered at the Place de l’Independence in a prelude to the national consultations scheduled for today September 9, 2020, at the Bamako International Conference Centre.
It should be recalled that former President Keita was overthrown by the military who forced him to officially resign his presidency on August 19, 2020 after months of street protests by a coalition of civil society organisations, one of which was the M5-RFP.
The military, currently headed by Lt.-Col. Assimi Goita, originally said they were not interested in power but eventually established an interest to hold on to helms of affairs for three years during which time they would organise presidential and legislative elections.
However, the coalition of civil society organisations, which held long-standing protests calling on President Keita to resign, demanded that the military hand over power immediately to a civilian – a request promptly rejected by the latter. After negotiations, the military reduced their term in government to two years but the civil society organisations have rejected that period as being too long. Negotiations are still going on.
Meanwhile former President IBK as he was popularly known, who suffered a mild stroke and was hospitalised in Bamako, has since been released from hospital and flown to Dubai where he is said to be receiving treatment.