Military junta leader Salou Djibo was made the interim president of Niger on Monday. The junta, which ousted President Mamadou Tandja in a coup last week, has promised to hold elections once the transitional period is over.
AFP - The leader of a junta that toppled Niger's President Mamadou Tandja last week is now the west African nation's transitional head of state and government, a military decree said Monday.
A decree read out on state radio said the functions of the acting head of state and government will be performed during the transition period in Niger by the president of the Supreme Council for Restoration of Democracy (CSRD), Major Salou Djibo.
The CRSD, "the highest authority designing and directing national policy, is headed by a president who exercises the functions of the head of state and government," it said.
The new power structure structure is effective during the transition period, whose duration was not specified.
Niger's middle-ranking military officers stormed the presidential palace during a cabinet meeting on Thursday to capture Tandja and his ministers.
Shortly after they sacked the government and suspended the constitution that Tandja had pushed through to extend his grip on power beyond a 10-year-limit.
A task force will be created under Djibo's authority to draft a new constitution and electoral laws. The draft constitution will then be taken to a referendum before it is adopted, the order said.
A so-called "constitutional committee" and a court will be set up to replace the constitutional court and the Supreme Court, all dissolved after the February 18 coup.
The interim president shall have powers to appoint or sack by decree, a prime minister and cabinet members.
He would chair the cabinet meetings, sign orders and decrees appointing military and civilian positions.
The military coup leaders
Niger’s military coup leaders dissolved the government on Feb. 18, after toppling President Mamadou Tandja in the uranium-rich central African country. In picture, military leaders announcing the takeover on state television.
The military group, called the “Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy” (CSRD), announced that its head would be Squadron Leader Salou Djibo, whose unit played a key role in the coup.
The group’s spokesman Colonel Goukoye Abdoulkarim said “we have decided to put an end to this tense political situation”.
In picture, Col Djibrilla Hima Hamidou, also known as Péle. Hima Hamidou was the junta orator during the final troops takeover in 1999.
Colonel Harouna Adamou, a Nigerian military figure, also led the coup on Feb. 18. He, too, participated in the 1999 takeover.
Date created : 2010-02-22