Several dozen protestors rallied in Burkina Faso’s capital Tuesday as West African envoys arrived on a fact-finding mission following the country’s latest coup.
The mission was headed by Guinea-Bissau Foreign Minister and included the West African mediator for Burkina Faso.
If protesters were hostile, the envoys were however welcomed by the country’s new strong man and met with customary and religious authorities.
In Ouagadougou, demonstrators marched against ECOWAS. “ECOWAS is a disgrace, Amadou Sagada exclaimed.
“We want to tell them that the Burkinabe people are standing up and will not let themselves be taken away. What the captain has done is the will of the people and we are behind them”, the high school teacher added.
The regional bloc has witnessed five coups among three of its members in little over two years.
Pressing for a return to constitutional rule in member states lead by juntas, ECOWAS adopted a contested method: which included sanctions.
“We are not against their coming (the ECOWAS envoys) to Burkina, protester Bado Nebon said.
“We oppose them because we know what they are coming to do: destroy the country. We are well aware of that, that’s why we’re opposed to that.”
Protesters chanted pro-Russian slogans and called on France to exit the country. Despite a call for restraint by the coup leader, demonstrators even gathered in the zone of the airport where the west African mission landed.
If the coup leader had urged restraint for a smooth course of the ECOWAS mission, a heavy military presence kept demonstrators away from the main entrance of the airport where they had rallied to make Ecowas envoys feel unwelcome.