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Published:March 30th, 2011 11:35 EST
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Ban Welcomes Transition To Constitutional Order In Niger

By SOP newswire3

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has telephoned the key players in the recent elections in Niger to congratulate them for the dignity, leadership and statesmanship they have shown in the transition to constitutional order.

In February last year, renegade soldiers stormed the presidential palace and deposed then President Mamadou Tandja, who had been accused by opposition figures and others of anti-democratic practices. A military ruling council subsequently dissolved the Government and suspended a contested constitution that would have allowed Mr. Tandja to remain in power beyond the stipulated term.

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Mr. Ban called Lieutenant General Salou Djibo, Head of the Supreme Council for the Restoration of Democracy, on Monday and voiced his satisfaction at the successful way in which Niger had managed the transitional process to constitutional order.

He also spoke to Mahamadou Issoufou, proclaimed winner by the Independent Electoral Commission, who will be inaugurated as President on 7 April, and to Seini Oumarou, who has conceded defeat. He praised both contestants for the dignity, leadership and statesmanship displayed by them and for their efforts to promote national reconciliation.

In a statement earlier this month, when the results were announced, Mr. Ban underlined the UN`s commitment in Niger and said it would continue to assist the people of Niger and the future leadership in addressing post-transition challenges. "

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