General News of Sunday, 8 March 2015
Ms. Hannah Tetteh, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, has called for concerted efforts by ECOWAS member countries in the fight against terrorism in West Africa.
“We need to help our sister countries deal with the threat of terrorism before they travel down to us and also share security intelligence among ourselves,” she said.
Ms. Tetteh said this during the launch of the 40th Anniversary of ECOWAS slated for April-December 2015 under the theme: “40 Years of Regional Integration in West Africa: Whither Africa?”
She said those perpetuating religious conflicts in Nigeria and Mali were doing it for their own selfish reasons and not for Islam, as Islam is a religion of peace.
She said ECOWAS members had started working on a common Identity Card for all members of the sub-region in order to boost free movement and minimise the challenges associated with doing business.
Ms. Tetteh expressed satisfaction with ECOWAS for drawing up a framework that would enable it to intervene in conflict areas in the sub-region and in Africa generally.
She said there were a lot of informal trade taking place within the ECOWAS sub-region which needed to be documented and streamlined to enable ECOWAS to benefit more.
Some of the activities earmarked for the celebration in Ghana include national stakeholders retreat, essay competitions, media discussions, sensitisation workshops, beauty contest, dinner dance and awards night.