ECOWAS calls for intensified fight against corruption

Adoba Echono, Abuja

Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament, Mr. Moustapha Cisse-Lo

The Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament, Mr. Moustapha Cisse-Lo has urged ECOWAS Parliamentarians to intensify their commitment in promoting good governance and to continue the fight against corruption in fulfilling the agenda 2020 of ECOWAS.

Mr. Cisse-Lo made the call at the opening ceremony of the Delocalised Meeting of the Joint Committee on Political Affairs, Peace, Security and APRM, Gender, Women Empowerment, Social Protection, Legal and Judicial Affairs in Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso.

The theme of the event which is “Status of Implementation of ECOWAS Protocol A/P3/ 12/ 01 on the Fight Against Corruption: ECOWAS Parliament’s contribution thereto” is to give the overview implementation of the Protocol which was adopted in Dakar Dec. 2001.

Mr. Cisse-Lo said that the meeting was holding in Burkina Faso because the government of the country has shown constant commitment to regional integration in promoting democracy and good governance.

According to him, the recommendations and resolution of the meeting will help in guiding the Parliament in resolving some of the challenges faced in the region.

“ECOWAS communities have adopted an important document to promote good governance and fight against corruption, it is an opportunity for me once again to commend all the Commissions, Speakers of the Parliament and all Members of Parliaments,” Mr. Cisse Lo explained.

“So we can see that the Parliament is on track on the agenda 2020 of ECOWAS, which is the ECOWAS of the people, in addition this various recommendations and  have resolution has enabled us to guide the decision in managing the challenges our country’s are faced with.”

The Speaker of the National Assembly of Burkina Faso Alassane Sakande, who was represented by the Deputy Speaker Benewende Sankara in his message, said that the region recognises its commitment in fighting against terrorism and insecurity.

He said that the theme of the meeting shows the role to be played by Parliament in terms of the Implementation of development policies especially the instrument put in place by the community to fight corruption.

Mr. Sakande said that corruption was creating havoc in our daily lives stating that international community and ECOWAS Parliament must continue to be committed in dealing with the course through the various instruments by Africa Union.

The Co-Chair of the Joint Committee, Moussa Badiaga said that the fight against corruption was very important in the economy development of the region stating that the meeting would enable the Committee to assess the overview of the status of Implementation in the region.

“Parliament has decided to hold this meeting to ensure that the fight against corruption is committed also to the representative of the people in the community as a whole and there will be a statement on the level of Implementation.

“The theme of our meeting dwell on the fight against corruption, one cannot overemphasized it important for economy development.

“The main objective of this meeting is to give an institutional overview of the ECOWAS Protocol on the fight against corruption and also to assess the impact on improving good governance and I need the Parliament to contribute to it.”

He said that corruption is an incentive given to a person to accomplish an act stating that corruption is a very serious issue threatening good governance in our respective countries which needs to be fought with the political will by those in authority.

“The fight against corruption cannot succeed if the central authorities do not show the necessary political will to sustain the fight against corruption through the separation of powers between the judiciary and the legislature.

“The Parliament as the representative of the people must ensure that they prosecute it agenda in the fight against corruption through the passage of Anti-corruption laws.”

He however, said that the Civil Society’s has a vital role to play in ensuring good governance because it has the power to cross check the actions of government.