President Ernest Bai Koroma over the weekend chaired a mini-summit of the ECOWAS AD- HOC Committee of Heads of State and Government on the allocation of statutory positions within Community Institutions held at the Lungi Airport Freetown. The meeting of the AD- HOC Committee of five Heads of State and Government of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), charged with the responsibility of reconsidering restoring a system regarding the allocation of statutory posts included Sierra Leone’s President Ernest Bai Koroma, Liberia’s President H.E Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Guinea Bissau’s President S.E .Mallam Bacai Sanha, Togo’s President Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe and Mali’s President Amadou Toumani Toure, who was represented by his Minister for African Integration and Malians abroad Dr.Badara Aliou Macalou. Among what was also said to have been discussed together with the proposals put up for the allocation of posts, was re-examining the procedures of the rotation system based on alphabetical order, transparency and predictability.
Declaring the summit opened, the Chairman President Koroma extended warm welcome to his counterparts and their delegations to the splendid shores of Sierra Leone. “Our ECOWAS is once again taking a significant step towards creating a more inclusive, effective and accountable organization by conveying a meeting of the Ad- Hoc Committee of Five Heads of State and Government charged with the responsibility of restoring a system regarding the allocation of Statutory posts within ECOWAS institutions” He said. The Chairman added that the fulfillment of our mandates holds enormous promise for greater commitment, unity and harmony amongst member states. “An ECOWAS that dearly holds transparent and equitable criteria for allocating statutory posts in our institutions is definitely on firmer grounds for attaining the objectives for which the organization was founded” He maintained.
President Koroma expressed optimism that “We are more than equal to the task; and that our proposal to the next session of Authority of Heads of State and Government will be met in acclaim” He observed that it is because of that belief that he urged them to make recommendations that are reflective of the wishes of member States and recalled that representatives of member States had raised concerns regarding statutory allocations of posts in ECOWAS institutions, during the last ECOWAS summit in Abuja, Nigeria. The Chairman noted that it is pertinent that their recommendations speak to these concerns, particularly as they relate to the ECOWAS Commission Community Parliament and Community Court of Justice. He urged the Committee to reconsider modalities of the system of rotation, taking into account of alphabetical order, transparency, eligibility and predictability.
The Committee then went into closed session. After the closed session it was not disclosed what they have agreed upon and reached. According to the Chairman the Presidential Committee’s proposals and recommendations will be submitted to the next session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government for final approval and adoption. However President Koroma informed that they have had very frank and objective discussion and as a result has been successful adding that they have adhered to guidelines both legal and general, within the Community and to reports of the Ad- Hoc Ministerial Committees that had been set up to consider the same issues. He thanked them for coming.
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