Mali: ministers named


Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita named new defence, mines and foreign ministers as he began his second five-year term presiding over a country ravaged by jihadist and inter-ethnic violence.

Keita was sworn in last week after winning a landslide re-election despite escalating attacks by Islamist militants and clashes between herders and pastoralists that killed hundreds of civilians this year.

The violence spread to neighbouring Niger and Burkina Faso, alarming Western powers including France and the United States, which deployed troops and air power across the region.

Keita retained Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga as Prime Minister and most of the 33-member Cabinet was unchanged, according to the announcement on state television.

His pick for defence minister, Tiemoko Sangare, was previously mines minister.

Sangare’s predecessor as defence minister, Tiena Coulibaly, was moved to justice.

Lelenta Hawa Baba Bah was named mines minister after leading the National Directorate of Geology and Mines. As minister, she will oversee government’s bid to revise the mining code, potentially by reducing the length of operators’ exemptions from changes to the fiscal regime.

Mali is Africa’s third-largest gold producer behind South Africa and Ghana, with major investors including Randgold Resources Ltd and AngloGold Ashanti Ltd.

Keita named Kamissa Camara as foreign minister. She was previously a foreign policy adviser at the presidency.