June 17, 2024

President Bazoum lost “worrying” amounts of weight, says doctor

14 April 2022, Niger, Niamey: Mohamed Bazoum, President of the Republic of Niger, awaits the German Foreign Minister. Photo: Kay Nietfeld/dpa (Photo by KAY NIETFELD / DPA / dpa Picture-Alliance via AFP)

A personal medical doctor of the deposed Nigerien president, Mohamed Bazoum, has spoken for the first time after he attended to the leader of the country who is still in detention.

The doctor explained that Mr. Bazoum has lost “worrying” amounts of weight but remains in “good spirits” despite being kept in “difficult” conditions by the junta that toppled him.

Mohamed Bazoum, his son, and his wife have been detained in the basement of his Niamey mansion since the coup on July 26.

“Living conditions remain difficult, with electricity still cut off,” the doctor was quoted as saying by RFI, the French public radio station.

The visit was sanctioned by the junta as international pressure mounted for the release of Mr. Bazoum.

His 20-year-old son, who has a chronic medical problem, is also said to have been denied medical attention.

“The doctor was able to talk to the Head of State, as well as his wife and son,” RFI reported. “All are well, he said. The doctor was also able to bring them food and medicines.”

“Following the visit, President Bazoum’s family said they were relieved,” the radio station added.

Earlier, Mr. Bazoum’s daughter Zazia, who was on holiday in France when the junta seized power told the Guardian that her father, mother and brother had no clean water or electricity and were living on rice and pasta.

“The situation of my family is very difficult currently,” she told the Guardian. “They say they will keep fighting, but it’s hard to see our family in this situation and they can’t go out.”

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