Participants at the consultative meeting to deliberate on ECOWAS Vision 2050 have proposed to the ECOWAS Commission to establish a permanent Consultative Forum for Traditional and Religious Leaders of ECOWAS Member States to increase collaboration and dialogue.
The traditional and religious leaders have also pledged their support to work with ECOWAS in the areas of Peace Building, conflict resolution and mediation as enshrined in the peace and security architecture of ECOWAS, Facilitating the youth to participate in agricultural programs, Environmental protection, Border security and prevention of Cross border criminality amongst others.
These were captured in the Kyebi Declaration after a meeting held from Feb 25 to 26 at the palace of the Okyehene, Osagyefo Amoatia Ofori Panin in Kyebi, in the Eastern region of Ghana.
The 10-point declaration amongst others Commended the ECOWAS Commission for this holistic, inclusive and innovative approach to the analysis of the region’s development challenges and economic policy formulation.
To this end, vulnerable groups including the handicapped, children and women must be prioritized as well as the issue of employability of young people.
It underlined the unique role of traditional and religious authorities for stability and peace, especially in rural areas, and communities with a weak presence of defense and security forces.
They invited the ECOWAS Commission to pay particular attention to issues related to the expansion of agriculture and agribusiness in the Vision, given the great potential of the sector to providing employment for the youth and ensuring food security.
It said improving governance and fighting corruption would increase the impact and quality of Member States’ development efforts and suggested an improvement in the implementation of already adopted Community policies.
The Kyebi Declaration was signed by representatives of 10 countries made up of Ghana, Nigeria, Togo, Mali, Cote D’Ivoire, Benin, Burkina Faso, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Sierra Leone.
By Martin Asiedu Darteh|3news.com|Ghana