West Africa: President Weah Urges ECOWAS Parliament to Solve Region's Problems Together

Monrovia — His Excellency President George Manneh Weah has called on members of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament to place greater emphasis on working together in order to effectively solve problems affecting the region.

President Weah acknowledged that though there are challenges that seem critical and daunting facing the Region, he noted that with unity and togetherness involving all members, the august body can lead to finding effective solutions.

"We are aware of the tremendous challenges we face and the efforts being exerted by every member state of ECOWAS to tackle those challenges," the Liberian Leader said. "I am, however, confident that the discussions to be held during this session will lead us to important conclusions on the subjects being discussed."

In a special statement at the 2nd Extraordinary Session of the ECOWAS Parliament Monday, September 16, 2019 at the Ministerial Complex, President Weah urged members of the Parliament to take note of the enormity of the task before them and to face them heads-on with oneness of purpose and determination.

He said: "Remember, no matter how much we can do by ourselves on the national level, it is never enough. In the spirit of true cooperation, we in this region must join in an action-oriented effort to tackle and solve our problems together."

President Weah, who reflected on his days serving at the ECOWAS Parliament as head of the Liberian delegation, told the gathering that he and his colleagues successfully deliberated on issues confronting the common interest of the institution, as to how they could address emerging social and communal developments threatening member states.

The Liberian Head of State hailed the cordiality and humble interactions he had with colleagues.

He said: "I still recall my days at the ECOWAS Parliament and the warm reception I received when I was inaugurated as a Member of Parliament. I was received not only as a colleague, but as a brother and a friend. The relationships built and the bonds shared remain active even up to this moment."

"It is gratifying to recall the many meetings we held in different Member States, and the various sessions we attended together, exchanging ideas and tackling the challenges we face as a Community; for we are indeed resembling a Community of People and not of States."

As a ranking member of the Parliament, the President recalled his service as a member of the Committee of Labour, Employment, Youth, Sports and Culture.

He added: "Together, we deliberated on policy directions to address employment in our Community particularly, youth employment and to promote peace and unity through sports."

President Weah said he was a part of an Ad hoc Committee charged with the mandate to work with the Authority of Heads of State and Government to ensure that the Parliament attained enhanced powers in order to be able to discharge its traditional roles regarding representation.

"Your presence here today, holding an extraordinary session out of Abuja, is the expected outcome of consolidated efforts by the Parliament in achieving its vested interest," he said, adding, "And I am indeed very proud to be counted amongst those who contributed to achieving this feat."

"It is based upon this providence and in accordance with the Supplementary Act relating to the enhancement of the Powers of the ECOWAS Parliament that you have gathered here today to deliberate on the issues that beset our Community of Peoples, the first of its kind in Liberia and the third country to host the Parliament for its extraordinary session."

The Liberian leader said he was proud of the achievements he and his colleagues made, noting that having an Extraordinary Session of the ECOWAS Parliament out of Abuja was to enhance consolidated efforts in achieving its mandate.

President Weah also used the occasion to thank members of the Liberia delegation for keeping the flag of Liberia high at this regional body.

He thanked those who are working so diligently to ensure the success of the Session, the day-today to running of affairs of the Parliament, and the and high degree of professionalism they bring to the table.

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