The Chair of the Administration and Finance Committee (AFC) of the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Ambassador Kadangha Bariki Limbiyè of Togo, has called for a restructuring of the regional organization.

Togo currently holds the chairmanship of ECOWAS.

 In his speech at the opening of an extraordinary AFC meeting on institutional reform in Lome, Togo on Monday, Mr. Limbiyè reminded the participants of the importance of this reform for ECOWAS.

“This reform will provide ECOWAS with a new impetus for efficiency and pragmatism, to meet the requirements of modern governance rules that demand both soundness and thoroughness,” he said.

Limbiyè said it was therefore imperative to complete the restructuring of the Commission and other ECOWAS institutions to improve their intended operational efficiency and save resources for projects and programs that would benefit West African citizens.

 “To mark a radical change in its governance, ECOWAS must somehow lose out in one aspect of life to usher in another. It is clear that this institutional reform is a crucial turning point in the life of ECOWAS,” Limbiyè stated.

This watershed moment will be initiated by the current management team of the ECOWAS Commission, declared the Vice President of the Commission, Mrs. Finda Koroma.

“The new Commission management team that assumed office on March 1, 2018 thus inherited the onerous but crucial task of completing the re-organization project in all institutions,” Mrs. Koroma stressed.

She indicated that the ECOWAS Commission considered this special meeting to be a truly important one as decisions and proposals to be made would facilitate the establishment of strong and sustainable structures within the Community that would result in efficient service delivery to Member States.

“The ultimate objective remains the development and implementation of impactful programs for Member States. At the same time, we will fulfill the Community’s vision and mission for socio-economic development and poverty reduction in Member States in order to improve people’s living conditions,” remarked Madam Koroma.

For his part, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, reiterated that the meeting would mainly be devoted to the consideration of the new organogram of Community institutions, prior to submission to the Council of Ministers of the regional organization.

The adoption of this organogram, Mr. Brou added, would be a crucial step in the institutional reform that began in 2013.

“This institutional reform was requested by the Heads of State and Government to strengthen the efficiency of ECOWAS institutions, streamline their functions and contain operating costs,” he noted.

He recalled that no human work is perfect, much less the organogram that would be presented to AFC members.

He, however, pointed out that measures are being taken to ensure that it is reasonable and takes due account of crucial structural and operational needs of the Community.

The first day of the meeting coincided with the commemoration of the 43rd anniversary of the creation of ECOWAS.

“We should have stopped to celebrate this important event in all our countries. Unfortunately, we were unable to do so and had to convene this AFC meeting in view of the tight schedule of activities to be submitted to the next meeting of the Authority of Heads of State and Government. I sincerely apologize for this,” Brou noted.



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