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General News of Thursday, 30 September 2021

Source: ghanamps.com

ECOWAS member states can’t deal with extremism and piracy unilaterally - Zanetor Rawlings

Ranking Member on the Committee of Defence and Interior, Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings Ranking Member on the Committee of Defence and Interior, Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings

The Deputy Ranking Member on the Committee of Defence and Interior of Ghana’s Parliament, Dr. Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings has said that ECOWAS member states can’t deal with extremism and piracy unilaterally in the West African sub-region.

According to her the issues are huge and hence there is the need for collaboration with the various member states, and that is why there is a lot of movement going on in this regard with the Commission and Authority of Heads of State and Governments of ECOWAS.

“It requires international collaboration; cooperation and it means member states should be able to draw one another’s attention to things happening within their territories that may be creating vulnerability for the sub-region.”

She was, however, quick to point out that, it is also not the issue of meeting and having conferences, but also being able to tell fellow leaders the situation happening in one’s part of the country where the arm forces are not having a presence in a particular area.

Dr. Zanetor speaking with Ghanamps.com in an interview recounted that a few years back when one hears of piracy, it was mainly at the horn of Africa and seems far away, but statistics on maritime crime last year indicate that ninety percent of the crime was in the Gulf of Guinea.

And attributed the whole state of insecurity and piracy to the scumble of resources, adding; “the huge oil reserves in the West Africa sub-region are seeing the movement of commercial ships which make it an important region, and the landlock areas rely on access to the sea the reason why we are seeing this.”

And added that in the wake of the spread of violence and extremism, a lot of the terrorist attacks is becoming obvious that they are drifting southwards wanting to have access to the sea, and obviously they would want to target Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria who have access to the sea.

Similarly, Dr. Agyeman-Rawlings expressed worry over the penchant for constitutional leaders to extend their tenure by changing their constitution which causes an uprising resulting in instabilities but was emphatic that these are some of the things that most people would not want to talk about.

She said developments such as this lead to gaps within our sub-region that have to be addressed and taken on board seriously. “It defeats the purpose of having ECOWAS and AU, member states are to adhere to the various agreements for the betterment of the citizens,” she emphasised.

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