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Burkina Faso approves three years military-led transition before elections

BY Ebunoluwa Olafusi

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A national conference in Burkina Faso has approved a charter that will allow the ruling military government to hold power for three years.

The military had seized power in a coup against President Roch Kabore, blaming him for failing to contain surging violence by Islamist militants.

The coup was led by Paul-Henri Damiba, who is now the interim president.

The charter was approved and signed by Damiba on Tuesday, after a debate in Ouagadougou, the capital of the country.

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Damiba had earlier said the country would return to constitutional order when the time was right.

A commission that drafted the charter had proposed a two-and-a-half-year transition, saying the junta needed about two years to stabilise the country and organise elections, but the national conference extended it to three years.

The new regime would establish a transitional government made up of 25 ministers and a 71-member parliament.

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The coup in Burkina Faso was the fourth in West Africa in 18 months, following two in Mali and one in Guinea.

The development had raised concerns about the fate of democratic rule in the region.

Burkina Faso was suspended from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the African Union (AU) after the coup.

In February, after an ECOWAS delegation was sent to meet with the military government, the West African bloc said the junta had shown willingness to organise elections.

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