By Temitope Bonle
The ECOWAS Parliament has said it would address security challenges in the sub-region during its extraordinary session in January 2017.
ECOWAS parliament President, Mr Moustapha Cissé Lo said this at a news conference on Thursday in Abuja at the end of the parliament’s Second Ordinary Session.
At the news conference, also attended by heads of delegates of the 15 member states in the parliament, Cissé Lo said that the parliament played its role in making recommendations to address security challenges that plagued the sub-region.
He said “we have decided to meet in January to brainstorm on security issues in our communities and find out what agenda to put in place to ring the bell harder in the ears of our executives and Heads of State.
“We can take our recommendations to the Heads of State and Government for everyone to participate in the realities of our region.”
Addressing the issue of the non-implementation of community protocols, the president said that the parliament could only sensitise governments of member states.
He urged the media to project the efforts being made toward integration and development in the sub-region.
He added that “we will try to improve communications, and what we can do is to make visible our performance through you (the media) so you can assist us to do our work well.”
The representative of the Malian delegation, Mr Yaya Sangaré, called on ECOWAS to take ownership of the peace process in Mali.
Sangaré urged the bloc to form a community defence force to take over the leadership of security in that country.
He said “more than 350 people were killed in terrorist attacks in Mali from January to August this year; several parties violated peace agreements.
“Those violating the peace are from neighbouring countries.
“ECOWAS should assume leadership so that the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilisation Mission in Mali will go and hunt down the enemies of peace than serve as interposition.”
The Second Ordinary Session of the parliament adopted the various committee reports and the roadmap for the Draft Supplementary Act on the Enhancement of Powers of ECOWAS Parliament.
The parliament agreed to forward the document to the Heads of State and Government for adoption in December. (NAN)