President Bola Tinubu has called on ECOWAS leaders to prioritise good governance for the citizens in the quest for socio-economic transformation and development of the region.
At the 64th Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Tinubu emphasised that good governance would guarantee improved quality of life and stable environment.
‘’Let me also underscore the need for us, as leaders, to prioritise good governance for our people, as it serves as a catalyst for socio-economic transformation and development.
‘’The delivery of good governance is not just a fundamental commitment; it is also an avenue to address the concerns of our citizen, such as improved quality of life and a stable environment conducive to the achievement of sustainable development.
‘’By providing good governance that tackles the challenges of poverty, inequality and other concerns of the people, we would have succeeded in addressing some of the root causes of military intervention in civilian processes in our region.
‘’Our gathering here today is, therefore, a clear demonstration of our resolute commitment to the development and effective integration of our sub-region.
‘’As a people, we aspire to create a borderless, peaceful, prosperous and cohesive region, built on good governance and the rule of law, where people would have the opportunity to realise their full potentials for sustainable development,’’ he said.
On the issue of democratic abortion in some member countries, the President underscored the need for sustained efforts to ensure the return of peaceful transition of power based on the people’s choice.
‘’Allow me to emphasise that, to further strengthen our regional democratic achievements and uphold the right of our people to elect the leaders of their choice, the region agreed upon specific punitive measures to be taken against any Member State opting for unconstitutional change of government.
‘’While the imposition of punitive sanctions may pose challenges, it is important to underscore that the struggle to protect the fundamental liberties of our Community Citizens must be upheld and respected.
‘’To this end, I would like to reiterate the imperative of re-engaging with the countries under military rule on the basis of realistic and short transition plans that can deliver democracy and good governance.
“On our part, we should be prepared to provide them with technical and material support, to ensure the achievement of these strategic goals.’’
Tinubu said that the countries involved in alliance against democratic tenets would not be allowed to distract the community of its resolve to follow laid down rules and regulations for dealing with such actions.
‘’It is important that we also review some development in our sub-region including the move by some of our members under Military rule to float an Alliance of Sahel States.
‘’This phantom, push back-alliance appears intended to divert attention from our mutual quest for democracy and good governance that will impact the life of our people.
‘’We refused to be detracted from pursuing the collective dreams, aspirations and the noble path of ECOWAS integration as laid out in our institutional and legal frameworks,’’ he said.
The ECOWAS Heads of State and Government are in closed door meeting to further deliberate on issues affecting the region in the last one year and those arising recently.
The body is expected to receive special reports on the practical arrangement for the Launch of the ECO , report on Member States in Transition, report on States of Implementation of the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme (ETLS) as well as decide on the venue of the 65th ECOWAS Session.