ECOWAS Commission Chief, Liberia's President discuss national security, regional issues

Monrovia, Liberia (PANA) - ECOWAS Commission Kadré Désiré Ouédraogo and host Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf have held talks on a host of issues, including security at the Liberia-Cote d’Ivoire border and political and economic developments in the region.

The talks were held at the Executive Mansion in the Liberia's capital, Monrovia, Tuesday, as part of the ECOWAS Commission President's humanitarian mission to the country.

Both leaders later told journalists that concerted measures were required to consolidate the peaceful atmosphere along the Liberia-Cote d’Ivoire borders after the unfortunate incident that resulted in the deaths of some Niger UN peacekeepers on the frontier last June.

President Ouedraogo, who was making his first official visit to the country since he assumed office in March, said the talks also covered areas of ECOWAS support, engagement and encouragement to Liberia in deepening democratic governance, security sector reforms as well as economic and infrastructure development.

Other priority areas are the energy sector with progress in the West African Power Pool (WAPP) project that will ensure inter-connectivity among ECOWAS countries, and the Liberia leg of the Trans-West African Highway.

President Ouédraogo said there was the urgent need for effective implementation of the region’s flagship Protocol on Free Movement of Persons, Goods and the Rights of Residence and Establishment, adding that regional integration and economic development would be a pipe dream without free movement of persons, goods and services across the borders of member states.

The ECOWAS chief commended President Jonson-Sirleaf for providing exemplary leadership in the region and for her contribution to conflict resolution, particularly on Mali and Guinea-Bissau.

He noted that Liberia was on the path to economic prosperity after a devastating civil war and pledged the Commission’s continued support to the country.

As part of his visit, President Ouédraogo presented 300 metric tons of rice to the Liberian government for distribution to Ivorian refugees in the country, and also visited the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and Coordinator of UN operations in Liberia, Mrs.
Karin Landgren for talks on ECOWAS-UN partnership and cooperation.
-0- PANA SEG 19Dec2012

19 december 2012 08:48:56

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