Manu Lekunze, a lecturer at the University of Aberdeen, said both ECOWAS and the UN were selective in their condemnations and should have listened to the Malians who have been taking to the streets for weeks.
"Malians are not happy. The army is coming out to do what the protesters were demanding. The protesters were demanding for Keita to resign for a very long time. His removal is an opportunity for the country to take a new path," Lekunze told Al Jazeera. Tens of thousands of protesters, unhappy with rampant corruption, alleged election irregularities and worsening insecurity that has rendered large parts of Mali ungovernable, have rallied in Bamako since June calling for Keita's departure. "France, ECOWAS, UN and the AU have come out and said, 'we don't want unconstitutional change' but you see unconstitutional activities going on across Africa. In Ivory Coast, you have a president seeking a third term and the UN is saying nothing about it. In Guinea-Conakry, not far from Mali, the president is seeking a third term. So, the constitutional argument is not really an argument," he added.
The spark for the political crisis was a decision by the Constitutional Court in April to overturn the results of parliamentary polls for 31 seats, in a move that handed 10 more seats to Keita's party. The protests turned violent in July when aKeita came to power after winning a 2013 election held the following year after another military coup forced the then-government of Amadou Toumani Toure out of office.
Marie-Roger Biloa, an analyst at Africa International Media Group, said Keita's removal by the army did not come as a surprise. "The situation has been deteriorating for years in Mali and the country has been in an open crisis for weeks now,"
"The apparent support of the coup by a section of the population says a lot about how they perceive state institutions and the constitution. It also showcases the depth of disarray and decay in which those institutions find themselves,"