The New Times (Kigali)

2 June 2012

Mali: African Parliament Condemns Mali Coup

Photo: Emilio Labrador
Rebel forces in the north of Mali propose Timbuktu for the capital of a new state.

The Pan-African Parliament (PAP) has passed a resolution condemning human rights abuses in Mali, following the recent violent seizure of power and asked the African Court of Human and People's Rights to tackle the security issue in the northern part of the country.

The motion on the situation in Mali was moved by Agnes Mukabaranga from Rwanda, appealing to humanitarian organisations to come to the aid of populations in distress, according to a statement.

Renegade Malian soldiers in March declared they had seized power in protest over the government's failure to quell a nomad-led rebellion in the north.

The coup was mounted by soldiers of the rank of captain or lower, adding a new coat of insecurity to a Saharan region which is already battling local al-Qaeda agents and a flood of weapons trafficked from Libya since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi.

On the current situation in South Sudan which was moved by MP Prof. Peter Katjavivi, from Namibia, the statement said, the lawmakers demanded that the international and national bodies work with the PAP to put pressure on Sudan to implement a UN Security Resolution and go back to the negotiating table to resolve the conflict between North and South Sudan.

The UN Security Council in May unanimously passed a resolution calling on Sudan and South Sudan to halt hostilities or face potential sanctions.

The Parliament was meeting for its last sitting of the Seventh Ordinary Session of the Second Parliament.

Both motions were adopted by the House, resolving that fact finding missions will be sent to Mali and the Sudans.

Meanwhile, during the sitting, a report on Boosting Intra African Trade was also presented by the Secretary-General of COMESA, Sindiso N. Ngwenya.

The report notes that the economies of most African countries have been vertically integrated into the global economy on the basis of raw material supplies which has resulted in low intra regional trade.

Ngwenya suggested in the report that the African continent should adopt developmental integration which focuses on infrastructure development and industrialisation.

It noted the need for member countries to cede sovereignty to Pan-African institutions so that they can enforce decisions made collectively.

Closing the session, the President of PAP, MP Bethel Nnaemeka Amadi, said the body had "demonstrated the stability of the institution by conducting a peaceful transition of leadership".

He further applauded the outgoing President and Bureau of the PAP for their work in the amendment of the PAP Protocol.

He assured the House that the new Bureau would work hard to see the transformation of PAP into a legislative body. "There is no honeymoon period for this Bureau, our work starts now," he said.

The next session of the PAP, which is the First Ordinary Session of the Third Parliament, will be held in October 2012.

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