ECOWAS to restore government in Mali, Niger, Burkina-Faso, says Tinubu

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has reiterated the commitment of the Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS) to sustain the push for the restoration of constitutional government across member states.

Tinubu, who is ECOWAS chairman gave the commitment on Tuesday at the opening of the 2024 second extraordinary session of the community parliament in Kano.

Tinubu underscored the essence of political and constitutional stability as a panacea to prosperous regional growth and integration and declared Nigeria’s willingness to work with the regional legislators to entrench strong democratic ties among states.

Represented by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Yusuf Muhammad Tuga, the ECOWAS Chairman charged the community parliamentarians not to hesitate to navigate beyond rules of procedures to provide solutions to the prevailing regional differences.

While emphasising the role of the community parliament, Tinubu urged the legislators to map out a strategy to strengthen democratic institutions and values, geared towards regional security and economic integration.

Presiding over the session, the First Deputy Speaker of the ECOWAS parliament, Sen. Jibril I. Barau disclosed that there is a strong alignment of the regional legislators and other arms to build progressive collaboration and synergy among members states.

The ECOWAS speaker who double as Nigeria Deputy Senate President, emphasized urgent collaboration with institutional blocks to address military rule in Mali, Niger and Burkina-Faso.

Jibril echoed the parliament’s dissatisfaction of non-state actors in some member states threatening the civil rule and provoking insecurity thereby inflicting untold harship on citizens.

He added the parliament has set up adhoc committee to mediate with leadership of the military junta in Niger, Mali and Burkina-Faso for peaceful resolution and return of democracy in the member states.

In his welcome address, Kano State Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf hinted that with the projected $633 billion USSD Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and estimated population of 765 million by 2043, member states have the potential of making huge contribution to global economy.

Yusuf however insisted that attaining the giant stride may remain ellusion, failure of the region to build strong regional block of economic development, insecurity, proliferation of illicit substance among other setbacks.

The host Governor charged the community parliament to legislate regional economic policy that reverse the use of member states as dumping grounds for western products while fronting corridor that boost the regional economy.

About 50 community parliamentarians from Nigeria, Benin Republic, Cape Verde, Gambia, Ghana, Cote ‘D Ivoire, Liberia, Senegal, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Togo, and Sierria Leone are in attendance for the week long extraordinary session of the sixth parliament in Kano.

While the ECOWAS parliament has issued one year grace to rethink their position, members from Republic of Mali, Niger and Burkina-Faso have withdrawn their membership with the regional block.

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