Osinbajo Represents Buhari at ECOWAS Summit as Rift Deepens

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SWITZERLAND, NOVEMBER 09 – Vice President Yemi osinbajo has represented president Muhammadu Buhari at the ECOWAS summit in Niamey, Niger Republic, even as the ongoing rift between the two deepened with the sack of 35 aides of the Vice President.

The Summit, which included other ECOWAS Heads of State and Government, reviewed the ongoing situation in Guinea Bissau. Consequently, the ECOWAS has forced the Prime Minister to resign after only 11 days in office.

Braima Darame, a representative of the Economic Community of West African States known as ECOWAS, asked Imbali to step down within 48 hours to allow for presidential elections to take place on Nov. 24. Imbali was nominated to the post by President Jose Mario Vaz.

The bloc, which has been trying to mediate an end to a political crisis in Guinea-Bissau, reiterated its support for former Prime Minister Aristides Gomes, who was ousted by Vaz less than two weeks ago.

Vaz, 60, has been embroiled in a power struggle with his ruling party since he came to office in 2014, firing six prime ministers and raising concerns that there may be an eruption of political violence. Back-to-back record cocaine seizures this year have raised fears that the tiny West African nation could again turn into a key transit point for drugs flowing into Europe.

Ahead of his visit, Osinbajo’s media aide, Laolu Akande tweeted:

“VP Osinbajo to represent President Buhari today in Niger where an Extraordinary ECOWAS summit is holding to review the ongoing situation in Guinea Bissau. He will depart Abuja this morning and return later today.”

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