Over 990 diplomatic passports linked to Niger’s ousted regime cancelled

Military leaders of the recent coup in Niger have cancelled about a 1000 diplomatic passports that have linked to the ousted regime. The decision limits foreign presence in the country.

The recent military rulers in Niger have cancelled over 990 diplomatic passports held by individuals connected to the previous regime, both nationals and foreigners.

The foreign ministry has officially informed diplomatic missions in Niger that it considers these passports expired now. This is  as indicated in copies of the letter circulating on social media.

These diplomatic passports were in the possession of former high-ranking officials from various government institutions and ministries, as well as former members of parliament and advisors to the ousted president and prime minister, according to the ANP, the official press agency.

Authorities issued approximately 50 passports to individuals from countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Libya, Turkey, and other West African nations. They also issued over 900 cancellations to citizens and lawmakers.

The ousted President, Mohamed Bazoum was removed from power on July 26 and is currently being held under detention. In late August, the new administration also revoked the passports of several government members who were overseas, including the prime minister, foreign minister, and Niger’s ambassador to France.

These efforts signify the ruling junta’s efforts to seek sovereignty mainly from French rule and other foreign influences. The Sahel region over recent years have been faced with violent extremism. Since 2020, Burkina Faso and Mali have also had coups.

French rule in Niger, which spanned from the late 19th century until Niger’s independence in 1960, had profound consequences on the country. The colonial administration implemented policies that aimed at exploiting Niger’s resources and controlling its population. Forced labor, land confiscation, and resource extraction were common practices, leading to economic hardship and social disruption among the local population.

The French also instituted a system of indirect rule. relying on local chiefs and administrators, which perpetuated existing power structures and exacerbated ethnic and regional divisions that continue to affect Niger’s social fabric.

Consequently, the consequences of French rule in Niger were far-reaching. Traditional cultures and social structures eroded as a result of colonial influence. As a result, the country was left with a legacy of economic inequality and underdevelopment.

The focus on the extraction of uranium, primarily served the interests of the colonial authorities and French companies. This left Niger with a fragile economic base and limited infrastructure.

Despite gaining independence, Niger still grapples with the enduring impact of colonialism on its political, social, and economic systems. These include challenges related to governance, education, healthcare, and ongoing efforts to address historical injustices. The decision to cancelling diplomatic passports just underscores efforts to undo the adverse effects created from French colonialism.


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