The new President of Niger, Mohamed Bazoum, was inaugurated on Friday. In front of an audience of Heads of State, the successor of Mahamadou Issoufou outlined the main lines of the policy he intends to pursue at the head of his country.
Mohamed Bazoum, newly elected President of Niger, took the reins of power on Friday, April 2, 2021, during an inauguration ceremony held at the Mahatma Ghandi Center in Niamey. A close collaborator of Mahamadou Issoufou, of whom he is a founding member of the PNDS-Tarayya party, Mohamed Bazoum did not fail, in his inaugural speech, to shower his predecessor with praise. Moreover, he clearly sees his mandate as a continuation of the ten years of President Issoufou’s regime, of which he was one of the key players.
One of the biggest projects that the new President intends to tackle fiercely is the security issue, as he has inherited a country that has been increasingly plagued by terrorism in recent years. « Terrorism is a real misfortune for our country, especially as its bases are outside our territory. Its leaders are from other countries. No terrorist leader has ever made a complaint against our state, let alone made any demands on it. In the Diffa region, Boko Haram has destabilised the economy since January 2015, » said Mohamed Bazoum.
« My ambition is to immediately engage in discussions with the Nigerian authorities to particularly create the conditions for the return, as soon as possible, of all refugees to their country. My ambition is to allow the equally rapid return of the displaced to their respective villages by ensuring them the security to which they are entitled. This is an imperative necessity because children who have dropped out of school and are idle, living in refugee and IDP camps, constitute in my view, as they grow up, a real breeding ground for banditry and terrorism, » continued the new Head of State.
Mali is one of the countries from which the terrorist leaders come and in which action must be taken. « The current situation in Mali has a direct impact on the internal security of our country, » said Mohamed Bazoum: « This is why our diplomatic agenda will focus on Mali.
Beyond the security issue, the fight against poverty, corruption, etc. is also part of the new leader’s agenda. « Anyone who has a responsibility in the administration will be held accountable for their actions, » he warned.
Several heads of state were present at the inauguration ceremony, which took place with an impressive security detail. This is the case of Burkinabe Roch Marc Christian Kaboré, Chadian Idriss Déby Itno, Mauritanian Mohamed Ould Ghazouani, Togolese Faure Gnassingbé. France was represented by its Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jean-Yves Le Drian.