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Niger Foils Coup Attempt Days Before Presidential Inauguration

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By: Babagana Bukar Wakil Ngala.

Residents of Niger’s capital Niamey reported heavy gunfire near the presidential palace on Wednesday morning in what appeared to be another attempted coup ahead of President-Elect Mohamed Bazoum’s inauguration on Friday.

Our source in Radio Albana in Capital Niamey told Dandal Kura Radio International that the shooting lasted for about 20 minutes.

Former Foreign Minister Bazoum Mohammed is an ally of out-going President-Mahamadou Issouffou.

The Constitutional Court last week confirmed Bazoum’s victory in the February 21 presidential run-off election with 55% of the vote. However, his opponent, former President Mahamane Ousmanane, who received 45% of the vote has rejected the poll results and called for a peaceful protest.

Dandal Kura Radio also observes that Niger, one of the world’s poorest nations is scarred by insecurity with perennial ethnic crisis, Terrorism insurrections and political instability, characterized by several military successful and attempted coups, were coups in the country in 1974, 1996, 1999 and in 2010.

The defence ministry was expected to issue an official statement on the situation but up to the time of filing this report there’s no official statement emanate from the authorities in the Niamey the country’s capital.

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