Madam Shirley Ayorkor-Botchwey, Chair of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers, says ECOWAS will continue to assist the Government and people of Guinea Bissau on their democratic journey.
She said ECOWAS would pursue the agenda even after the drawdown of the ECOWAS Mission in Guinea Bissau (ECOMIB) and the United Nations Integrated Peacebuilding Office in Guinea-Bissau (UNIOGBIS) in the latter part of 2021.
Madam Ayorkor-Botchwey said this in her opening address at the 45th Ordinary Session of the Mediation and Security Council which was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
She said the meeting would examine the report of the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Mediation and Security Council at the Ambassadorial level, and internal memoranda, including; the Memorandum on the Political and Security situation in the region, update on the Status of the implementation of the National Early Warning Centres in the Member States, and the Humanitarian situation in the region.
Madam Ayorkor-Botchwey called on Ministers and Representatives of Member States to conduct a thorough consideration of the recommendations from the Mediation and Security Council at the Ambassadorial level and the various memoranda that had been put before them for approval.
She acknowledged the determination of the Chair of the ECOWAS Authority, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, his peers and the entire ECOWAS Commission, led by Jean-Claude Kassi BROU, in steering most proficiently the programmes of the Commission, and especially for supporting and consolidating the peace and stability of the region.
Madam Botchwey commended members of the Mediation and Security Council at the Ambassadorial Level and ECOWAS Ambassadors for the “remarkable” contributions towards peace and security in the region, noting that elections in six of its member countries – Togo, Guinea, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Niger- demonstrated ECOWAS’s growing democratic credentials.
Speaking on COVID-19, she said it was time not to let one’s guard down and said, “We need solidarity, a common resolve, and a coordinated regional effort if we are to succeed in eradicating this scourge.”