Mali’s constitutional court on Friday named Colonel Assimi Goita, leader of the post-coup junta, as the country’s transitional president.
The judgement stipulated that Goita would “exercise the functions of transitional president to lead the transition process to its conclusion”, following his seizure of power this week.
The constitutional court said it had made the decision due to the “vacancy in the presidency” following the resignation of caretaker president Bah Ndaw.
Soldiers detained Ndaw and prime minister Moctar Ouane on Monday, before releasing them Thursday after they resigned.
Ndaw and Ouane had led a transitional government tasked with steering the return to civilian rule after a coup last August that toppled Mali’s elected president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.
Keita was forced out by young army officers, led by Goita, following mass protests over perceived corruption and his failure to quell a bloody jihadist insurgency.
Goita had originally been named vice president with other key posts given to fellow army officers.
Earlier Friday, Goita explained that the army had had little choice but to intervene.
“We had to choose between disorder and cohesion within the defence and security forces and we chose cohesion,” he said.