November 19, 2018
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament on Saturday 17th of November 2018, adopted the country reports of Gambia, Niger and Burkina Faso, with first Deputy Speaker Sulaimon Lasun Yussuff presiding.

Mr. Muhamed Magassy who presented the country report of Gambia highlighted on the political and security situation in his country, pointing out that the country continues to enjoy political and economic stability since the change of government in 2017.

Truth reconciliation and reparation commission were appointed and inaugurated to start work to foster social cohesion and recognize the suffering to restore dignity of thousands of victims who were affected directly or indirectly under former President Yaya Jammeh regime.

On political rights and civil liberty, he noted that the constitution guarantees freedom of expression, “over the years state-owned Gambia radio and television service (GRTS) have been monopolized, but with the coming in of the new administration private radio and television station had been licensed and operational”.

Also Gambia delegation to ECOWAS conducted a sanitation activities, a robust one at Gambia-Senegal border in Farafenni on Monday 30th April 2018 which brought together all stakeholders from both side of all the two sides. .

He concluded his report and said Gambia is ever committed to the ideals of the sub-regional bloc and shall never relent in its efforts for the integration process of the ECOWAS Community.

Sawani Karimou Presenting the country report on Niger, also touched on the security situation in his country and noted, since the collapse of the Libyan State, Niger a Sahelo-Saharan country is confronted with threats from various pockets of insecurity at its borders.

On free movement of persons and goods he noted that his country has ratified the ECOWAS protocol; however like other countries in the community and efforts by successive governments, border crossing is seriously impeded and the community citizens are extorted.

Last to present its country report for the day was Burkina Faso done by Benao K. Reine Bertille who noted that her country had experienced slight upheaval because of the crises in the Independent National Electoral Commission.

All partied concerned are working together to find a solution, especially as the timetable for the election is almost out; the referendum on the constitution, legislative and Presidential elections.

Security situation in Burkina Faso is yet to improve despite targeted interventions by the defense and security forces, leading to more than four hundred schools being closed and the National Assembly had to meet over the matter in September this year.

“Mr. Speaker, a contingency plan was adopted to support the military, taking into account motivation intelligence and massive rapid exceptional recruitment of a contingent in 2018”.

Members of Parliament pledged to hand over one million (1,000,000) CFA francs to help the defense and security forces in their fight against terrorism.

By: Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/