24 Feb. (EUROPA PRESS) –
A military court in Niger has sentenced 27 people this Friday for the attempted coup against the government of former Nigerian president Mahamadou Issoufou in March 2021, a coup that took place days before the inauguration of Mohamed Bazoum as the new president. from the African country.
Sentences range from life imprisonment –for five of the defendants who have fled the country– to twenty years in prison for the masterminds behind the coup, including Major Colonel Hamadou Djibo and Captain Sani Gourouza, alleged leader of the coup group, as reported by Radio France Internationale.
Likewise, General Seydou Badie, who was chief of the General Staff of the Nigerien Army, has been sentenced to four years in prison for not denouncing the coup, while 35 people have been acquitted for lack of evidence, including the former Minister of the Interior and former ambassador to Chad Cissé Ousmane.
On the other hand, the court has also imposed a sentence of ten years in prison against those financially involved in the coup, while those accused of participating passively have been sentenced to five years in prison.
The Government of Niger claimed to have “frustrated” a coup attempt after a shooting in the vicinity of the Presidential Palace in the capital, Niamey, in March 2021 after security sources reported the arrest of several soldiers for their alleged involvement in the coup.
Niger has been the scene of three coups since its independence in 1960 and at the time of the incidents it was just days away from a takeover that marked the first peaceful transfer of power since its independence from France.
Bazoum, who thus succeeded Mahamadou Issoufou, prevailed in the second round of the presidential elections against the main opposition candidate, former president Mahamane Ousmane, who has refused to recognize the results and had called protests for the day on which the events took place.