Bamako – A court in Mali’s capital on Friday handed a suspended six-month sentence to a former vice president of the country’s interim parliament, a legal official said.
Issa Kaou N’Djim, an influential figure in the conflict-ridden Sahel state, was arrested in the capital Bamako on October 26.
Officials said he was accused of making “subversive remarks”, but the comments were not publicised.
N’Djim is a supporter of Malian strongman Assimi Goita. He is also known for his sharp criticism of Interim Prime Minister Choguel Kokalla Maiga.
His arrest came after he criticised the interim government for expelling a representative of the West Africa bloc Ecowas, for reasons that remain unclear.
On Friday, a court in the capital Bamako handed N’Djim a suspended six-month prison sentence, finding that he had undermined “the credibility of the state”, according to a legal official who requested anonymity.
N’Djim had previously served as a vice president of an interim legislature established in the aftermath of a military coup led by Goita in August 2020, which ousted elected president Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
Under diplomatic pressure, the army handed power to a civilian-led interim government tasked with steering Mali back towards civilian rule after the coup.
But Goita deposed the leaders of this government in May in a second coup, and was later declared interim president himself.
The strongman is facing pressure to stage swift elections to restore civilian rule, including from regional bloc ECOWAS and the United Nations.
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