Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mohammed Habib Tijani, has reinforced Ghana’s commitment to the implementation of programmes and activities of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
“Ghana is willing and ready to work closely with this body to achieve the aspirations of our community at all times, especially during our chairmanship,” he said.
He indicated that as the chair of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of States and Government, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo prioritized security and tourism activities in the region.
He said other priority areas were the coming into effect of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfFTA) agreement on January 1, 2021, and the 2022 decision on the monetary union within ECOWAS, consolidation of democratic governance in the region and the effects of Covid-19 on the economies of member states.
He said the priority areas, which were consistent with the agenda of the community, however requires an effective framework for deeper integration in the region for the benefit of community citizens.
Mr Tijani was speaking at the opening of the 2020 annual meeting of Heads of ECOWAS National Offices in Accra, to discuss the achievements and challenges of the implementation of the community programmes at the national level.
The three-day meeting on the theme: “Enhancing the Coordinating and Networking Role of the Heads of ECOWAS National Officers within the Covid-19 Pandemic Era,” is being attended by 15 participants from the sub-region.
Mr Tijani said expectations were that at the technical level of the Heads of ECOWAS National Offices, innovative recommendations would be made to inform effective decisions to address the myriad of challenges confronting the region.
He however noted that the challenges notwithstanding, the community deployed positive energies and talents from Heads of ECOWAS National Offices to work together in a concerted faction to help ECOWAS deal with the challenges of the time.
ECOWAS Commission’s Commissioner for Finance, Halima Ahmedin lauded President Akufo-Addo for visiting the ECOWAS Secretariat in September, 2020 on his assumption of office as the Chairman of the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State.
She also expressed gratitude to the President for presenting his priority agenda to the Commission, adding that the Commission was working towards the implementation of the five priority agenda.
Madam Ahmed said the objective of the Accra meeting was to discuss how best ECOWAS Member States were managing the Covid-19 responses to share best practices on sensitization activities with key stakeholders such as the youth, women and community organizations at the national level.
Resident Representative of ECOWAS in Ghana, Baba Gana Wakil, also commended Ghana for its great response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said the good example set by the country has highlighted the importance of strong leadership and commitment to a common goal.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri