Bola Tinubu has been unanimously endorsed as the new Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) at the 63rd Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau. As the latest member of the exclusive club of West African Heads of State, President Tinubu has accepted the honor on behalf of Nigeria and has pledged to lead an inclusive administration for the regional organization.
President Tinubu highlighted the alarming threat to peace in the sub-region, which includes terrorism and the emergence of military takeovers. He stressed that insecurity and terrorism are hindering progress and development in the region. President Tinubu called for collective action from member states, emphasizing the utilization of regional frameworks to address the menace of insecurity.
The new ECOWAS Chairman prioritized political stability, peace, security, and regional economic integration. He expressed concern over the increasing number of coup d’états in West Africa and urged ECOWAS to stand firm in defense of democracy. President Tinubu emphasized the importance of democracy, good governance, and the respect for human rights and the rule of law.
Furthermore, President Tinubu called for enhanced private sector participation in the economic development and social integration of member states. He pledged to work collectively to promote trade, investment, and business cooperation among member states by addressing barriers to intra-regional trade and creating a conducive business environment.
President Tinubu announced Nigeria’s intention to convene an ECOWAS Extraordinary Summit on Trade and Investment in October 2023 to foster economic recovery and growth. He stressed the need for the conclusion of ongoing institutional reforms within the organization and ensuring that citizens’ taxes positively impact ECOWAS programs and projects.
President Tinubu expressed his appreciation to the Authority of Heads of State and citizens of the Community for the trust placed in him, and he looks forward to shaping a future of shared values, peace, democracy, and economic prosperity in the region.
Outgoing ECOWAS Chairman, Umaro Mokhtar Sissoco Embalo of Guinea-Bissau, commended fellow leaders for sustaining the vision of the organization despite economic challenges and trouble spots within the region. He acknowledged Nigeria and Sierra Leone for upholding constitutional order through successful democratic processes in recent elections.