An Open Letter to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR

An Open Letter to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR

Topic: The Niger Coup d’état: Aligning ECOWAS and Our 
National Interest

To: H E Bola Ahmed Tinubu
The President, Federal Republic of Nigeria
From: Concerned Citizens

Date: Abuja, 9
th August 2023

1) We join the Nigerian Government, the Authority of Heads of State 
of ECOWAS and the peoples of West Africa in condemning the coup 
of 26th July in the Republic of Niger that detained and sought to 
overthrow the Constitutional order in the Republic of Niger and 
illegally detained the legitimate Head of State, His Excellency 
President Mohamed Bazoum as well as members of his family and 

2) We applaud and appreciate the immediate steps that HE Bola 
Ahmed Tinubu, Chair of Authority of Heads of State, has taken in 
the form of statements, communiqués, missions and consultations 
with regional, continental, and world leaders for the immediate 
restoration of constitutional order in the Republic of Niger;

3) We firmly support the principle of Zero tolerance for unconstitutional 
change of government as enshrined in the ECOWAS and African 
Union Protocols and other instruments;

4) We understand the factors that led to the very strong measures in 
terms of sanctions, economic blockade and the possible use of force 
in re-establishing constitutional order;

5) We believe that HE President Mohamed Bazoum remains the 
legitimate elected President and Head of State of the Republic of 
Niger recognized by ECOWAS, the African Union and the 
international community; In this regard, we recognize that only 
official acts of President Bazoum or his duly mandated officials 
should be recognized.
6) Nonetheless, we respectfully observe as follows:

i. Niger is a very dear, brotherly and supportive neighbour to 
Nigeria and its people and measures taken should not be 
allowed to harm the Nigerien people;

ii. The cutting off of electricity supply to Niger, breaking a 
longstanding treaty obligation, may ultimately harm our 
national interest especially within the perspective of the 
Kandadji dam currently under construction by the Nigerien 

iii. The apparent rising wave of popular support for the putschists 
might create a situation in which the role of Nigeria is seen as 
being at variance with the interest of the Nigerien people and 
in support of external interests;

iv. Already, there is an orchestrated campaign in the social and 
traditional media portraying Nigeria in a negative light as an 
agent of France and the United States.

v. The strong presence of French, American and to a lesser 
extent Italian security personnel and assets, including a large 
US drone base, creates a situation that could easily transform 
an intervention for the restoration of democracy into a complex 
proxy war fought out by foreign interests engaged in the new 
geopolitical repositioning of world powers.

vi. In this regard, the current security challenges of insecurity 
around the Boko Haram insurgency, farmer-herder conflicts, 
banditry and mass kidnapping might all be exacerbated as the 
flow of arms, violent extremism and armed banditry spread 
and deepen in our sub-region.

vii. Nigeria has a serious humanitarian crisis, with millions of 
internally displaced persons and hundreds of thousands of 
refugees including in Niger. It is important to prevent the 
worsening of the humanitarian crisis.
viii. It is therefore important that as a Nation, we align our 
approach to the restoration of democracy in Niger to our 
national interests.

Our Prayers

A. Create conditions for the restoration of Trach 1 as well as Trach 2 
diplomacy by making a gesture to the putschists through measures 
such as the withdrawal of the threat of use of force;

B. Immediate deployment of Track 2 diplomacy through traditional 
rulers, religious leaders and civil society to urge the junta to open 
doors to diplomatic discussions between the two governments –
Nigeria and Niger as well as the Authority of Heads of State of 

C. Provide assurances to the Nigerien people of Nigeria’s commitment 
to maintaining friendship and fraternal relations with the government 
and people of Niger.

D. Improve Nigeria’s strategic communication showing actions 
undertaken are in tandem with our long-standing commitment to the 
protection and consolidation of democracy within Nigeria, ECOWAS 
and Africa. 

E. Make clear our collective resolve towards the full restoration of 
constitutional order in the Republic of Niger.

A B Mahmoud SAN
Prof Jibrin Ibrahim
Gen (rtd) M L Agwai
Prof Attahiru Jega
Prof M J Kuna
Dr Kole Shettima
Dr. Hussaini Abdu
Malam Kabiru Yusuf
Mrs. Maryam Uwais
Kabiru Adamu
Moufta’u Baba Ahmed
Dr. Usman Bugaje
Dr. Yahya Hashim
For A Group of Concerned Nigerians