President Sirleaf’s Special Envoy Confers with ECOWAS President

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A special envoy of the Chairperson of ECOWAS Authority has held discussions with the President of the ECOWAS Commission.

A dispatch from the Liberian Embassy in Abuja says Dr. Abdoulaye Dukule, heading President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s special envoy, met and began the discussions as part of a two-day working visit.

The discussions, aimed at harmonizing and attaining the priorities of the Chairperson and those of the ECOWAS Commission as well as other institutions for the years 2016 and 2017, were held on Monday and Tuesday, the 8th and 9th of August 2016 respectively at the ECOWAS Commission in Abuja.

The delegation is also comprised of Mr. Benedict Roberts, head of the ECOWAS National Unit in Monrovia.

Liberia’s Ambassador to Nigeria and also Permanent Representative to ECOWAS, Professor Al-Hassan Conteh, accompanied the Liberian delegation to the Commission.

The dispatch says the Liberian delegation on Monday, August 8, met with the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Alain Marcel de Souza and his team.

Both sides talked on modalities that will put in place a smooth mechanism of coordination between the Commission and the ECOWAS Coordination Committee, which President Sirleaf set up at her Monrovia office.

President Sirleaf, who a little over two months ago assumed the chairmanship of ECOWAS, dispatched the special envoy to discuss with President Souza, who also heads the new team at the ECOWAS Commission.

During Monday’s opening discussion, Dr. Dukule, in his presentation on the Priority Agenda of the Chairperson, informed the President of the Commission of the Chairperson’s interest in getting an updated review of the Community Levy Protocol for her attention and intervention, to ascertain the level of payment compliance by Member States.

According to him, President Sirleaf, among other issues, seeks a clear roadmap that the Commission has put in place to implement the Maxwell Stamp Report with respect to the operational mechanisms and major issues pending at the Commission and other Community institutions.

“What are the urgent, relevant projects pending in the Community to be brought to the Chairperson’s attention, beginning with the review of the status of all tasks assigned in the Communiqué of the 49th Ordinary Summit of the Authority held in Dakar?” Dr. Dukule asserted.

He on behalf of the Chairperson commended the President of the Commission, adding, “She looks forward closely to working with you towards achieving the objectives of the Revised Treaty and ECOWAS Vision 2020.”

Earlier, the President of the Commission averred that the Commission is willing to work with the Chairperson to achieve the integration goals of the Community. He underscored the Commission’s support and compliance with the office of the Chairperson in the attainment of her vision.

Mr. Souza also disclosed that the status of various issues is being discussed at the level of the Committee of ECOWAS Ambassadors, chaired by Ambassador Conteh.

While recalling his recent visit to Monrovia where he met President Sirleaf, Mr. Souza said he is aware of the Chairperson’s desire to see more concrete results.

He then disclosed that in furtherance of this objective, he will also return to Liberia to continue the collaboration exercise.

In a PowerPoint presentation, Mrs. Henrietta U. Didigu, Legal Advisor to the Commission, provided detailed updates on the status of the Maxwell Stamp Report and the level of consultancy work with the Commission.

Meanwhile, Dr. Dukule and delegation will end their two-day working visit with the holding of discussions on other major issues and projects of the ECOWAS Community.

The delegation will meet with other commissioners of the Commission, including Liberia’s Dr. Antoinette G. Weeks, Commissioner for Infrastructure.

They will also meet with the Commissioners for Finance (of Sierra Leone), Trade (of Niger), Political Affairs, Peace and Security (of Nigeria), and Macroeconomic Policy (of Mali).

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