ECOWAS Parliament Opens Transhumance Seminar In Monrovia -As VP Taylor Calls For Unity
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Thursday began the holding of a weeklong extraordinary session and seminar on Transhumance and Intercommunity Conflict in the sub-region.
Liberia is hosting regional body session for the first since the brutal civil unrest which claimed the lives of thousands of Liberians and others. The event brings together over one hundred (100) Parliamentarian representatives from ECOWAS 15 members’ Countries.
Liberia’s Special Representative of the President of the ECOWAS Commission in Liberia, Amb Tunde Ajisomo alarmed that the wave of violence in the sub-region needs urgent attention owing to the need to preserve peace and tranquility in all of West Africa.
Amb. Ajisomo named the proliferation of Fire arms, competition for scouting resources and issues relative to Transhumance as challenges confronting the region.
He called on governments of Members States to domesticate ECOWAS Transhumance protocols and take concrete steps to guard against human rights abuses; something he said will help the region positively.
Speaking during the opening session, Liberia’s Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor stated that there is a need for stronger collaboration and unity as a means of strengthening peaceful coexistence of members’ states in order to reduce conflicts on Transhumance and among communities.
VP Taylor indicated that conflicts between nomadic herders, farmers and encroaching population on the continent remain increasingly high thus claiming more lives in conflicts and leading many displaced, noting that the region needs to recollect and recognize efforts made by historical icons to forge ahead in order to maintain peace.
“As we convene this special session in search of a productive formula and ways in which cordial relationship can co-exist in the sub region, on our continent and amongst our people, permit me to suggest that we take a retrospective look in our history, to the farsighted pan-Africanist exhortations on our oneness in diversity as espoused by eminent continental icons like Nnamdi Azikiwe, Osegyefo Kwame N’krumah, Madiba Nelson Mandela, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, Patrice Lumuba and Kofi Annan amongst others.”
She lauded efforts of ECOWAS for choosing Liberia and ensuring that sub-region parliamentarian functions are taken closer to the people in members’ states which are vital to promoting greater harmony, understanding amongst people in the region.
“This trajectory rationalizes a critical need for the community of peoples to see that their representatives are keen on providing platforms wherein they have a greater grasp of the issues affecting and confronting them; thus allowing them to weigh in on the way forward for all,” VP Taylor noted.
The 4th Legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament earlier during its first ordinary session and parliamentary proceedings agreed to foster efforts in strengthening cross border electricity, security integration and one currency issues. The currency is named as EGO.
The One currency, according to ECOWAS Parliament will help alleviate constraints faced by business people and enhance trade and boost the economy in West Africa.
Currently, Ghana and Nigerian are debating as to the where the Central Bank will be situated to host the currencies and other countries with a stronger economy will start the implementation of the one currency.
Meanwhile, the Parliament is expected to take concrete actions through a resolution on the recent Xenophobia that affected the lives of Nigerians in South Africa. Nigerian has the highest representation at the ECOWAS Parliament with over 20 representatives. Though South Africa is not a part of ECOWAS, the resolution will focus on means of maintaining peace in the sub-region.