President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said ECOWAS is determined to restore constitutional rule in Burkina Faso, Guinea and Mali.
He said the regional body would also work assiduously towards impressing on the countries to do better with the security and humanitarian challenges they were facing.
President Akufo-Addo said this when he opened the sixth Extraordinary Summit of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government on the situation in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso at the Jubilee House in Accra last Saturday.
The President, who is the Chairman of ECOWAS, noted that all were in line with the resolute commitment of ECOWAS to uphold democratic governance and institutions in the region, as enshrined in its protocol on good governance.
“We’ve had several meetings on the unfortunate situations in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso. During our last summit, we were briefed on the social, political and security situations in Mali, Guinea and Burkina Faso, which informed the decisions we took,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo said just as happened in March 2022, the meeting would continue to focus on the political instability in the region with the resurgence of coups d’etat since August 2020, with the hope of finding some lasting solutions to them.
He said he looked forward to successful deliberations that would consolidate the joint efforts for the establishment of a peaceful, democratic and stable West Africa.
The ECOWAS Chairman told his colleague Heads of State and other representatives that their attendance was an indication of their strong commitment to peace and stability in the region.
Just after his opening remarks, the meeting went into a closed-door session.
Present at the meeting were the Presidents of Benin, Patrice Talon; Cote d’Ivoire, Alassane Ouattara; The Gambia, Adama Barrow, Guinea Bissau, Umaro Sissoco Embalo; Liberia, George Weah; Niger, Mohamed Bazoum; Nigeria, Muhammadu Buhari; Senegal, Macky Sall, and Togo, Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe.
At the end of the meeting, the Heads of State and Government appended their signatures to a communique which considered the reports presented by the ECOWAS Mediator on Mali, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, on the situation in Mali.
It also considered the reports of the ECOWAS Assessment Mission to Burkina Faso and on the situation in Guinea, presented by Ghana’s Minister of National Security, Albert Kan-Dapaah, who represented the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, who chairs the ECOWAS Council of Ministers.
On Mali, the communique said the authority decided to ask the Mediator to Mali to continue his efforts and finalise the discussions with the transitional authority accordingly.
The ECOWAS Authority decided to uphold the sanctions imposed on January 9, this year.
It called for continued dialogue with a view to reaching an agreement to ensure a gradual lifting of the sanctions as benchmarks of the transition were met.
Touching on issues in Guinea, the communique expressed concern over the deteriorating socio-political situation due to the lack of an appropriate dialogue framework between the government and the political stakeholders and civil society actors.
It expressed worry about the length of the 36-month transition period announced by the transitional authority and consequently demanded the finalisation of an acceptable transition timetable.
Source: Graphic Online