By Melvin Tejan Mansaray, Abuja Nigeria
The 2021 Second Second Ordinary Session of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament will focus on the examination and adoption of the 2022 Budget of the Community and also consider the presentation of the report on the state of the Community by the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Jean Claude Kassi Brou, according to a Press Release dated 30th November 2021 circulated by the Communication Division of the Community Parliament.
The 2021 Second Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Parliament will hold from November 30 to December 18, 2021, at the Seat of Parliament, Abuja, the capital of Nigeria and, “As provided in the Supplementary Act enhancing the Powers of Parliament, this parliamentary session will focus on the examination and adoption of the 2022 Budget of the Community. The vote for this budget comes in a difficult economic and social environment, marked by the persistence of the COVID-19 pandemic and terrorist attacks in the region,” the Press Release noted.
It also added that the Parliament will consider the report on the state of the Community by the President of the ECOWAS Commission.
“President Kassi Brou reforms this exercise by virtue of Article 32 of the Supplementary Act enhancing the powers of Parliament which states:” At each Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Parliament, the President of the Commission presents a general report on the state of implementation of the Community work program ‘. This bi-annual report to Parliament remains a very important highlight of the Ordinary Sessions of the Community legislature. As an inventory of the past year and projections for the year to come, this report by the President of the Commission provides an opportunity for stock-taking of the economic and social situation of the Community, to reaffirm its objectives, and to formulate some major orientations for the immediate future. The presentation of this report offers the representatives of the people, members of the public, the private sector, and indeed all other stakeholders, the opportunity to follow the level of implementation of Community programs.”
Aside from the budget, state of the Community report, the Press Release also announced that several parliamentary workshops are also planned during this session and public, private, or civil society organizations are invited to present and explain to regional deputies their missions and achievements and the challenges they face. Through these workshops, Parliament will listen to the concerns of these organizations.
Issues of direct election of members, security, good governance, regional trade and integration, free movement among other things are also expected to be deliberated upon after which a communiqué will be rreached on what is next for the Community Parliament and Peoples.