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Political Instability: MPs task ECOWAS institutions to be more proactive

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Political Instability: MPs task ECOWAS institutions to be more proactive

By Lizzy Okoji

Members of the ECOWAS Parliament called for urgent action by community institutions to stop distortions of democratic rule in member states.

Members of Parliament made the call on Wednesday, during a technical session of the ongoing high-level parliamentary seminar in Winneba, Ghana.

The parliamentary seminar on the theme “Two decades of democratic elections in ECOWAS member states: achievements, challenges and future prospects” aims to propose solutions to electoral inconsistencies in member states.

Hon. Ladi Ayamba, Member of Parliament from Ghana, who lamented the situation, said ECOWAS has solutions to the problems, but must have the political will to take positive action, highlighting the situations in Mali and Guinea that could have been avoided if ECOWAS was proactive.

“For me, it was a shame that ECOWAS went to Guinea for mediation, when action could have been taken when the people opposed the change of constitution, which led to the coup d’etat. State.

“ECOWAS had all the opportunities before the situation got out of hand, but treated the situation as very simple, then it became a big problem.

“It is time for ECOWAS to sit down and take action, before situations turn into problems,” Ayamba said.

Likewise, the Hon. Fatoumata Njai, representing Banjul Sud, The Gambia, lamented the recent coup incidents in Mali and Guinea, expressing fears that it will soon become a norm in other member states.

Njali said it was important for ECOWAS bodies to act now that the problem is “internal” before ECOWAS begins to seek international interventions.

“We thought the coup was a thing of the past, but unfortunately it is becoming a trend.

“First, it was the illegal amendment of the constitution in Mali, then in Guinea, then in Côte d’Ivoire, and we know what is happening in my country, The Gambia.

“We beg you not to sleep and close your eyes to this, stop it now before it is too late,” Njai said.

Professor Dakas Dakas, Senior Counsel for Nigeria (SAN) and expert at the seminar, also reiterated the need for proactive actions, especially in countries where there are already threats of constitutional changes.

Dakas said laws must be put in place by regional institutions to stop amendments to constitutions by presidents, who want to stay in power longer.

“ECOWAS needs to be more proactive instead of a fire brigade approach.

“It is clear that there is room for improvement, and it is evident that there is enough work to be done in proactive engagements.

“It is important that a variety of mechanisms be put in place and that commitments are made to advance the cause of democracy in the sub-region,” said Dakas.

Source: NAN

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