NASA scientist named Mali Prime MinisterBy KOUF KAF in Bamako | Tuesday, April 17 2012 at 16:57
Mali's interim President Diocounda Traore has appointed renowned scientist Cheick Modibo Diarra as Prime Minister, local television reported.
Dr Diarra, the Microsoft Corp's chairman for Africa, had declared his interest in the presidential race earlier scheduled for April 29.
The new Premier previously worked for the US agency, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
NASA is responsible for the nation's civilian space programme.
Meanwhile, questions are being raised as to who between Captain Adama Sanogo and Prof Traoré was running Mali.
Military officers, some fear, seemed to remain the main decisions makers in a country whose coup makers were last week forced to cede power to pave the way for a return to constitutional rule.
Cpt Sanogo, who handed over to Prof Traoré last Thursday, has maintained regular appearances on ORTM (national radio and television station), making announcements regarding national security.
He has also invited the public to surrender any properties acquired illegally during the March 22 putsch.
Prof Traoré, on the other hand, visited people who were wounded during rebel attacks in the north.
So far, several political and military leaders have been arrested and detained, mostly at the garrison town of Kati, 15km from Bamako.
Presidential aspirant and former Prime Minister Modibo Sidibé and Soumaïla Cissé, were among the Kati garrison detainees.
According to some unofficial sources, the two former high ranking officials were arrested by "hooded and unknown people".
Director General of the Police Mahamadou Diagouraga, former Defence minister Sadio Gassama and former Chief of Staff Hamidou Sissokoof had also been arrested.
Mr Bani Kanté, one of deposed President Ahmadou Toumani Touré’s advisers and a managers of Libyans Affairs in Mali, was also reportedly arrested.
Last week, the military junta released former Foreign minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maïga and eight of his colleagues.
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