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Don’t declare war on Niger Republic, ACF warns Tinubu

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Don’t declare war on Niger Republic, ACF warns Tinubu

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Apex Northern socio-political group, Arewa Consultative Forum, on Friday, warned President Bola Tinubu against declaring war on the Niger military junta.

ACF issued this warning to Tinubu in a statement by its General Secretary, Murtala Aliyu, while also calling for a dialogue to resolve the issue.

The Forum said military deployment and intervention to chase out the coup plotters in Niger Republic will not guarantee peace and stability in the ECOWAS sub-region.

ECOWAS had directed the closure of land and air borders between member states against the Niger over a military coup d’état that removed democratically elected President Mohamed Bazoum from office.

Authority of Heads of State and Governments of ECOWAS, chaired by Nigeria, also issued a seven-day ultimatum to the military junta in Niger to restore the ousted President Bazoum.

On Friday, Tinubu wrote the Senate to seek military intervention in Niger military if the junta are recalcitrant, in a bid to capture them and restore democracy in the West African country.

ACF statement partly read, “ACF, however, views with concern the unfolding events in Nigeria’s immediate neighbour, the Republic of Niger, and the potential impact on the region.

“The measures being contemplated should have taken into consideration the historical antecedents and mutual interests of the two countries and weighed the consequences of the use of military force.

“While the ACF recognises the ECOWAS position to bring pressure to bear on the perpetrators, nevertheless the military option shouldn’t be a prerequisite for Nigeria’s and the Community’s continuing efforts to enthrone democracy in the region in the 21st century.”

The Forum said though military intervention might yield a temporary solution, the result will come with repercussions for Nigeria as a leader and the regional body.

“To this end, ACF notes that while it supports the position to restore democratic rule in Niger, it calls on the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government under the able Chairmanship of President Bola Tinubu, that it should toe the path of dialogue and diplomacy and certainly not force, in resolving the current impasse in Niger in the interest of peaceful coexistence with our brotherly neighbour and stability of the ECOWAS region,” the statement added.