ECOWAS: Gov. gives recipe for faster regional integration

Lagos, Nigeria (PANA) - Governor Rochas Okorocha of Nigeria’s South-eastern Imo State has called for the adoption of regional laws that facilitate the realization of the objectives of the ECOWAS by contributing to the development and integration of West Africa.

Such laws, the Governor said while opening the 7th Judicial Retreat of the ECOWAS Community Court of Justice in the state capital, Owerri, Monday, should address the challenges militating against regional integration such as the language barrier  which hampers the interaction of community citizens and intra-community trade.

“We also need regional laws to protect investors and provide an assurance that cross border investments enjoy the protection of regional instruments from arbitrariness,” the Governor said at the retreat, which brings together judges and officials of the court to discuss various issues affecting the court.

He described the judiciary as an important tool for West African integration, unity and the promotion of justice in the quest for regional integration as “the Court is key to development of the region because if the judiciary is right then development will be right.”

In her welcome address, Hon. Justice Maria Do Céu Silva Monteiro, President of the ECOWAS Court, assured that despite the challenges confronting the Court, it would continue to make efforts to discharge its mandate because it shares the regional concern for an “efficient and effective Court that ensures the administration of justice.”

“This college of judges with the support of the staff are absolutely determined to achieve the major objectives that guided the creation of the court for the benefit of the community and the citizens,” she said.

The theme of the three-day retreat is 'The Procedure and Practice before the Court: which improvements after a decade of the existence of the Court.’

According to the Court, participants are expected to propose measures for enhancing citizen access to the Court whose mandate was expanded in 2005 to enable it deal with cases involving the violations of the human rights of community citizens.
-0- PANA SEG 7July2015                                          

07 Julho 2015 10:26:20

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