El-Rufai cautions ECOWAS against military intervention in Niger
The immediate past Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, has cautioned the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) against military intervention in Niger Republic.
The ECOWAS defence chiefs had on Thursday pledged readiness to participate in a standby force that would restore democracy in Niger after generals toppled and detained President Mohamed Bazoum.
In a statement via X, formerly known as Twitter, El-Rufai said, “As ECOWAS beats the drums of war, I recall the 1970s rock classic by Dire Straits – ‘Brothers in Arms’, because a war within our subregion is a war between brothers. Indeed, the people of Niger Republic are one and the same with those living in Northern Nigeria.
“Let us bend therefore over backwards to avoid this civil war between brothers.”
El-Rufai’s call to avoid military intervention in Niger is the latest from stakeholders in Nigeria’s northern region.
The Northern Senators Forum (NSF) had also asked Tinubu to exhaust all diplomatic means in resolving the crisis.
The forum warned that deploying Nigerian troops to the Niger Republic will hurt seven northern states — Sokoto, Kebbi, Katsina, Zamfara, Jigawa, Yobe and Borno — who share borders with the landlocked West African nation.
Shortly after their warning, Tinubu met with governors of five of the states as part of his wider consultations on how best to address the situation.