Colonel Assimi Goïta, Captain Ibrahim Traoré and General Abdourahmane TCHIANI, Presidents of the Transitional Governments of Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger respectively,
The Coordinating Council of the West African Peoples’ Organization (WAPO) has followed with great joy and happiness the historic signing of the Liptako-Gourma Charter in Bamako on Saturday, September 16, 2023; a singular event and act which gave birth to the Alliance of Sahel States (AES) comprising Burkina Faso, Mali, and Niger.
We welcome, with cautious optimism, the main objective spelt out in Article 2 of the Liptako-Gourma Charter which seeks to set up a shared framework for “establishing collective defence and mutual [economic] assistance for the Contracting Parties”. This objective is in line with our own foundation Charter that established the West African Peoples Organization founded in Winneba (Ghana) in December 2022.
In that adopted Manden Charter, our constituent organisations clearly expressed their belief and conviction “in greater West African collaboration [because] the peoples of West Africa share a history reaching back to the dawn of civilisation. [Hence, merging and] blending our separate struggles into one West African struggle is [therefore] a logical first step for the subregion in building a new future with and for our people”. Therefore, we applaud the current effort of the three nations.
The WAPO Coordinating Council accordingly,
1) welcomes the birth of the Alliance of Sahel States as the beginning of the realization of the ideals of the Founding Fathers of Pan-Africanism including Marcus Garvey, William E. B. Du Bois, Kwame Nkrumah, Sékou Touré, Modibo Kéita, Patrice Lumumba, etc.;
2) salutes the courageous and heroic battles being waged by the peoples of the Sahel (Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger) under your leadership, against the illegal war of aggression waged by the French colonialists through their jihadists;
3) honours the memory of the brave combatants who fell on the fields of honour;
4) affirms that the future of Africa lies in the union of African peoples and Pan-Africanism; and
5) urges your excellencies to devolve power to the masses through defence committees for instance and task them with the responsibility for democratizing specific areas of societal life.
Accra – Cotonou, September 20, 2023
Philippe Toyo NOUDJENOUME
President – Coordinating Council
Colonel Assimi Goïta
President, Transitional Government of Mali
Captain Ibrahim Traoré
President, Transitional Government of Burkina Faso
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso
General Abdourahmane TCHIANI
President, Transitional Government of Niger