ECOWAS Leader Postpones Planned Meeting With Senegalese President

ECOWAS Leader Postpones Planned Meeting With Senegalese President
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The Facts

  • Nigerian Pres. Bola Tinubu, who heads West Africa’s ECOWAS organization, postponed his meeting with Senegalese Pres. Macky Sall on Monday. The two were expected to talk about Sall’s controversial decision to postpone Senegal’s presidential election.

  • The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has advised Senegal to hold its election as scheduled on Feb. 25. Ministers from the bloc met last Thursday in Abuja, Nigeria, but leaders from Niger, Burkina Faso, and Mali, which left the group last month, were absent.

The Spin

Narrative A

Once considered an example of democracy in West Africa, Senegal is seeing the erosion of its democratic institutions, as Pres. Sall postpones this year’s presidential election. In addition to his undemocratic decision to stay in power beyond his term, Sall’s government has deployed riot police to teargas dissenters and has restricted internet access. Senegal must hold a free and fair election as scheduled, and Sall must leave office when his term ends.

Narrative B

Pres. Sall put any speculation about running for a third term to bed months ago, and he made the difficult decision to move Senegal’s election in order to protect candidates who were unfairly removed from the candidate list. Sall has no desire to serve beyond his two terms and is only looking to strengthen Senegalese democracy for future generations. The president is committed to being transparent in everything he does, and this decision will allow voters to pick the candidate of their choice without bureaucratic meddling.

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