Ghana is set to host the Mid-Year Statutory Meetings of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) in Accra.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey, made the announcement at a press briefing in Accra on Monday, as she explained that the meetings are being held following the successful completion of the 29th ordinary session of the Administration and Finance Committee (AFC) of ECOWAS, also held in Accra.
The AFC is made up of experts from ECOWAS member states’ Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Finance. The outcome of the session, held on June 8-12, this year, will inform deliberations at the session of the Council of Ministers on Wednesday and Thursday.
The meetings will include the 59th ordinary session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government scheduled for June 19.
It will be preceded by the 46th ordinary meeting of the ECOWAS Mediation and Security Council at the ministerial level and the 86th ordinary session of the ECOWAS council of ministers.
Botchwey pointed out that with the exception of Mali, which is currently suspended from the sub-regional grouping, all Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS are expected to participate in the summit.
Former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and ECOWAS Special Envoy and Mediator for Mali, Goodluck Jonathan, will also be at the summit.
He is expected to present a report on the current situation in Mali at the summit.
In line with the practice of ECOWAS, the sessions this week would deliberate on important regional matters germane to the community, including recent political and security developments that threaten the peace and stability of the region.
The agenda for the sessions would focus on the progress of institutional reforms in ECOWAS, ECOWAS Vision 2050, the Status of Tasks assigned by the 85th Ordinary Session of the Council of Ministers, the ECOWAS African Research and Innovation Forum (FARI), as well as the humanitarian situation in West Africa.
The Council of Ministers, would also consider and adopt a report of the activities of the ECOWAS Ministers of Trade and Industry and a report of the Ministerial Committee on Single Currency and a New Convergence Pact.
Also up for discussion would be the Regional Flood Risk Initiative Management Strategy and the Gender Strategy and Action Plan for Disaster Reduction.
It is expected that the summit will afford West African leaders the opportunity to further discuss the response of ECOWAS to Mali’s second coup which has sparked deep concerns on stability in the Sahel region.