President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has assured the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) that he would continue to play his part in the work of the Authority.
President Akufo-Addo, who on Sunday concluded his turner as Chairman of ECOWAS after a two-term, bemoaned the terrorist and Jihadist movement that were terrorising some West African countries in the Sahel regions killing innocent citizens in those affected countries.
The President also reflected on the political instability in the sub-region with countries like Mali, Burkina Faso and Guinea yet to have stable and civilian-led democracies following the unconstitutional overthrow of their elected governments.
He said the war in Ukraine had impacted negatively on food supply to many African countries with worsening economic effects.
President Akufo-Addo stressed the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the sub-region, as well as the subsequent disruptions by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
President Akufo-Addo handed over the ECOWAS Chairmanship to President Umaro Sissoco Embaló of Guinea Bissau at the 61st ECOWAS Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government in Accra on Sunday.
The President, who opened the session, described the position as “a privilege for Ghana and myself to be given the opportunity by you (Members) to serve this noble organisation for two conservative terms, particularly at one of the most trying periods of its history.”
He said he had benefited tremendously from the solidarity and empathy of his colleague Presidents in the discharge of “this difficult mandate that you have conferred on me for which I am very grateful.”
President Akufo-Addo was first elected Chair of ECOWAS in September 2020 by the 57th Ordinary Session of the Authority.
He replaced President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger, who steered the activity of the Authority for a year.
President Akufo-Addo was re-elected for a second term as ECOWAS Chair at an extraordinary session held on February 2, 2021, via Videoconference.
President Akufo-Addo also thanked the leadership of the ECOWAS Commission whose tenure had also ended.
He commended, especially Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, the outgoing ECOWAS Commission President, for his strong leadership during this “turbulent period.”
The ECOWAS leaders had gathered in Ghana’s capital, Accra for the 61st ordinary session of the authority of heads of state and government.
The West African leaders discussed several developments that had taken place in the sub-region over the past year to forge a better future for the regional bloc.
Rex Mainoo Yeboah, ISD