Captain Amadou Sanogo

Military adventurism and coup d’états have no place in a facebook and twitter age. Foolhardy soldiers who see in coup d’états, as others did in previous years, a fast track to personal aggrandizement, do so at their peril because the modern world of social networking won’t countenance the political aberration.

When Captain Amadou Sanogo took the opportunity offered him by the mutiny of some Malian soldiers to seize power, he was foolishly oblivious to the above stated realities, his US military training notwithstanding.

He gambled with fate and the international community, especially countries bordering Mali, showed him the red card as evidenced by yesterday’s ECOWAS-imposed sanctions.

History is replete with soldiers seizing power from civil authority under the usual pretext of improving security or economic situation of the country, but their adventures result in the worsening of the status quo.

Eventually shedding the Olive Green uniform, most coup leaders end up committing the very cases of impropriety which they accused their civilian counterparts of doing.

We doff our hats to the regional economic body but for whose intervention the soldiers would have held on to power indefinitely, even as they show total inability to stop the invading Tuaregs from the North.

We are amazed that Captain Amadou Sanogo, a man who undertook his military training in the US, would use the successes chalked by the Tuareg as a reason for toppling President Amadou Tumani Toure.

Let other persons in uniform be mindful about the realities of today’s world and erase from their psyche any funny idea of attempting coups.

We in West Africa in particular have come a long way since the attainment of independence and would therefore not countenance the anachronistic toppling of democratically elected governments by soldiers who should take orders from the civilian Commander-In-Chief. That is an indicator of modernity and democracy.

We are gladdened by the subtle adoption of an unwritten convention by ECOWAS to deny recognition to all coups.

The action of the regional body, which will definitely bring the junta leaders on their knees and therefore the restoration of the constitution and state institutions, has added to its stature.

The speed with which the regional body, especially those sharing borders with Mali, acted, is elating and we pray that the template is applied on any country whose soldiers take up arms for similar adventures.

For those who chanted the “mind your own business” refrain when Ivory Coast was burning, to protect their selfish political interests, this is a significant lesson for them to savour. Modern international diplomacy has no room for “dzi wo fie asem” and coup-making. Full stop!

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