Chambas advocates clear timelines for Union Govt in Africa

Accra- Ghana (PANA) - – The President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mohammed Chambas, has said there is the need to set 'clear timelines' on the achievement of a Union Government for Africa, which is the sole agenda of the ongoing 9th summit of the African Union in Accra, Ghana.
Weighing on the controversy over whether to allow the Union Government to evolve progressively or set definite timelines for its emergence, Chambas said a lack of timelines could mean an endless debate on the Union Government, and that siding with the 'gradualists' meant embarking on a journey of no destination.
He hailed the decision, by the AU summit in January in Addis Ababa to make the debate on the Union Government the sole agenda of the ongoing Accra summit, saying: "The time is opportune for this serious discussion at the level of heads of state on the way forward towards attaining that idea, which has been an aspiration of African peoples over the years.
"I believe that in the end, Africans will gather the courage to create a situation that can enable us attain this objective," the ECOWAS Commission President said.
Chambas said in spite of the laudable objectives set by African leaders for the continent, "we have not succeeded in putting in place the institutions, the structures that would help us to attain these objectives.
" "Now this debate is being carried on by our heads of state.
But I can assure you that it is capturing the attention of the entire African peoples who also see their destinies linked to the outcome of this debate," he said.
Stressing the need for the full political and economic integration of Africa, Chambas said in trying to stand alone as separate entities, African countries would not be able to meet the fierce competition of globalization.
"Our strength will lie in our ability to integrate, to meet our various challenges, not least of which is the unacceptably high level of poverty on this continent.
"So from the point of view of ECOWAS, we think the discussion is timely.
We believe it is entirely in order to speak about strengthening the capacity of the AU, giving it the means, the resources, the wherewithal to fulfil its mandate, an important part of which is being an effective coordinating agency of the Regional Economic Communities," he added.
The ECOWAS boss expressed the hope that the debate would end with "a very clear perspective on how Africa is going to realise the strengthening of the integration institutions on our continent so that sooner rather than later, we can attain our objective of a Union Government.

02 juillet 2007 14:02:00

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