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ECOWAS Economic Community of West African States : Towards reopening all closed land borders in the region

12/04/2021 | 05:52am EST
Towards reopening all closed land borders in the region 04/12/2021Harouna MAYAKI

Abuja, Nigeria, December 3, 2021. The ECOWAS Commission in collaboration with the West Afri-can health Organisation (WAHO) is organizing a Sectoral Ministers virtual meeting on the reo-pening of land borders in the region to facilitate the free movement of persons. Sectorial Min-isters in charge of Regional Integration, Interior, Trade, Health, Transport and Finance from Member States of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) are therefore scheduled to hold a virtual meeting on 6th December 2021 in order to deliberate on measures to ensure the coordinated, safe, secure and orderly reopening of borders in the region.

The Ministers are expected to validate the report and recommendations made by technical experts which outlined the essential practical modalities to be put in place for the implemen-tation of the ECOWAS COVID-19 directives on hygiene measures for the gradual and coordinat-ed reopening of borders.

ECOWAS and the West African Economic Monetary Union (WAEMU), through their Member States, are committed to the reopening of borders to facilitate the movement of people and goods, and to define measures to revive regional trade and supply chains between Member States.

The gradual reopening of the borders already begun by the States, requires good coordination between the States and the land-based actors in charge of border control in order to apply the community texts on the free movement of people and goods in the context of the existing health and security crisis.

It may be recalled that the 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government charged the ECOWAS Commission to work with Member States and West Afri-can Health Organization (WAHO) on the modalities to accelerate the reopening of land borders in a safe manner during the pandemic in line with the agreed ECOWAS Harmonized Guidelines for the Free Movement of People and Goods.

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Previous PostECOWAS Deploys 74 Observers for the Presidential Election in The Gambia The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has deployed seventy-four observ-ers for the ECOWAS Election Observation Mission (ECOWAS-EOM) to the Presidential Election in The Gambia. The observers were deployed today, December 2, 2021, in Banjul, ahead of the December 4, 2021 Presidential Election. As part of the ECOWAS electoral support to Member States, H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, approved the deployment of twelve (12) long-term ob-servers (LTOs) and sixty-two (62) short-term election observers (STOs) to The Gambia to sup-port and monitor the entire electoral process. The observers include Members of the ECOWAS Parliament, Community Court of Justice, Rep-resentatives from Ministries of foreign Affairs from Member States, Election Management Bod-ies (EMBs) and Election Experts from the Region. While thanking the Observers, Gen. Francis Awagbe Behanzin, Commissioner Political Affairs, Peace and Security of the ECOWAS Commission, highlighted that ECOWAS electoral assistance to its Member States finds its justification in ECOWAS Supplementary Protocol on Democracy and Good Governance of 2001 and the decision of the Authority of Heads of State and Govern-ment relating to the timely deployment of pre-electoral missions and observations in the member states organizing elections. The Head of the ECOWAS Election Observation Mission to the Presidential Election in The Gambia, H.E. Ernest Bai Koroma, former President of the Republic of Sierra Leone, in his wel-come address stressed that ECOWAS regularly deploys Election Observation Missions to Mem-ber States to ensure that elections are conducted in peaceful atmosphere for the consolidation of peace and security in the region. President Koroma stressed to the Observers that it is imperative that they succeed in their Mis-sion to ensure that the presidential election is transparent, free, fair, credible, peaceful and inclusive, and that ECOWAS standards are maintained in the process. "While noting the importance of security for the electioneering process, it is pertinent for me to state that our mission here rests more on ensuring that our contribution will help the coun-try for a smooth running of the process. If this is the case and each candidate accepts the ver-dict of the ballot, there will be no winner or loser but only one winner, the Gambian people", he added. The Head of Mission expressed the region's collective appreciation to the current Chair of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, H.E. Nana Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, for extending the regional support to The Gambia through the extension of the Mandate of ECOMIG forces and deployment of high-level mission of solidarity and support to The Gambia. ECOWAS has extended support to the democratic process in The Gambia and is committed to accompanying the government and the people through the Presidential Election. The ECOWAS support to The Gambia include: several diplomacy preventive missions, the operational de-ployment of the ECOMIG Mission, engagements with the country institutions, training on Dia-logue and Mediation for Peace Actors and other stakeholders in The Gambia, among others. This in-dicates the importance ECOWAS places on peaceful electoral processes in the Region.Next PostECOWAS Commission Organizes Technical Committee Meeting On Ecowas Single Currency Programme
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ECOWAS - Economic Community of West African States published this content on 04 December 2021 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 04 December 2021 10:51:07 UTC.


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