The Vice President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Finda Koroma, has re-emphasized the need for Ghana to have a fixed structure to deal with issues relating to terrorism, pandemics and other occurrences from the Sahel region, which are slowly creeping into West Africa.
Mrs. Koroma made the statement at the sensitization workshop on the establishment of the early warning and response mechanism at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday, March 12, 2020.
She stated that problems like terrorism, pandemics, violent extremism among others are not far from the West African coast because they have extended from the Sahel regions, and as such Ghana, just like any other West African country should be ready to put up a fight.
“I am sure you are aware that threats from Northern parts, and the Sahel region are now moving to the coastal countries. We saw that in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire and Guinea Bissau. For this reason alone, it is important that Ghana joins the club of other member states in having a structure that will predict conflicts, that will predict acts of terrorism, and be able to get reliable, verifiable and timely data that can be acted on at the highest level,” she advised.
She also added that West Africa is also facing unique problems, like irregular migration where many people move to Europe for ‘greener pastures’ which have great economic implications on the region.
“… Irregular migration, which is the elephant in the room we do not seem to want to talk about, but for me, for the fact that it causes a brain drain in our countries and it also denies potential citizens the ability to contribute to economic development and to pay their taxes,” she bewailed.
Mrs. Korona was however excited that West Africa will get closer to solving most of these challenges with the creation of the early warning and response centres throughout the region.