By Raphael Oni
The 45th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Mediation and Security Council (MSC) at the Ministerial level which held virtually on the 19th of January, 2021 ahead of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers meeting also scheduled to hold virtually from the 20th to the 21st January, 2021.
The meeting brought together ministers in charge of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Security of ECOWAS Member States deliberated on the security and political situation in the region among other matters.
Addressing the Ministers, H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, the President of the Commission stated that the Memorandum on the regional security situation being presented, duly took stock of the regional situation on the ground. He also restated the commitment and determination of the Commission to work towards achieving the objectives of the Community in the field of Democracy, Good Governance and Security.
In his words, “I take this opportunity to reiterate our firm condemnation of th terrorist acts in our region and to renew our solidarity with all the member countries affected by this violence”
Declaring the meeting opened, H.E. Mrs. Shirley Ayokor Botchwey, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation of the Republic of Ghana and Chair, ECOWAS Council of Ministers, urged the Ministers and Representatives of Member States to conduct a thorough consideration of the recommendations from the MSC at the Ambassadorial level and the various memoranda brought forward for approval.
She said the MSC would continue to focus attention on implementing the ECOWAS Action Plan against Terrorism while redoubling the collective efforts in honouring the financial obligations made towards the implementation of the 2020-2024 Priority Action Plan to combat terrorism in West Africa.
A minute silence was also held in memory men of honour who have all lost their lives since the last MSC meeting. They include, H.E. Jerry John Rawlings, former President of the Republic of Ghana, H.E. Amadou Toumani Toure, former President of Mali, H.E. Moussa Traore, Former President of Mali, H.E. Mamadou Tandja, former President of Niger and the late Dr. Nelson Magbagbeola, Secretary-General of the ECOWAS Commission.