By Paul Ejime
The still un-named man who attacked Mali’s interim President Assimi Goita with a knife at the Namako Grand Mosque on 20 July has died, an official statement said.
It said the man’s health deteriorated during an investigation and died in hospital.
Two men were reportedly arrested over the assassination attempt.
An autopsy had been conducted on the dead man and its result, as well as the outcome of an investigation into the attempted assassination of Goita would be made public, the statement added
In a video report of the attack, which went viral, a young man armed with a knife lounged at Goita, who was clad in a blue robe and seated among worshippers during the Muslim Eid Festival.
Goita, 38, led the military coup of August 2020 that toppled the government of elected President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita. He was named vice president of a subsequent transition government, which he then ousted in a second coup, before effectively assuming the interim presidency himself.
That move prompted Mali’s suspension by the regional bloc ECOWAS and the African Union, followed by the suspension of military cooperation and assistance by France and the U.S.
But Goita has pledged his commitment to carry through a political transition programme including elections in February 2022 for hand over to a civilian government in Mali, which has become chronic for insecurity related to terrorism, separatist and Jihadist insurgencies from 2012.