Economic Community of West AfricanStaes(ECOWAS) will continue to strengthen partnership with the West Africa Network for Peace building (WANEP) for regional peace and security, Mr Alain Marcel Da Souza, President of the ECOWAS Commission has said.
He noted that the wisdom of ECOWAS to formally collaborate with civil society organisations (CSOs) and in particular WANEP was in line with the ECOWAS vision of transforming itself from an ECOWAS of States to an ECOWAS of People.
Mr Da Souza made these remarks in Accra at the official opening of the WANEP Head Office and Launching of a book entitled: “Strides and
Strides and Strains of CSOs in West Africa: The WANEP Story”.
He said ever since the emphasis on human security became enshrined in international normative frameworks and adopted by ECOWAS as the undergirding principle for its Regional Conflict Prevention programme, the issue of peace and security could no longer be the sole preserve of governments.
He said building peace and ensuring human security was the collective responsibility of all stakeholders.
“Governments everywhere have come to recognise and accept the critical role of civil society in complementing its efforts at building peace and sustainable development,” he said.
He noted that WANEP’s achievement in acquiring this beautiful edifice and publishing its peace building practice experiences was a commendable African success story worthy of emulation.
“In providing regional leadership to prevent and mitigate armed conflicts in the West Africa region and following the approval of the ECOWAS Conflict Prevention Framework, ECOWAS from the outset understood and included in its key documents the integral roles of CSOs,” he said.
Mr Chukwuemeka B. Eze, the Executive Director of WANEP, said with the cooporation of governments, ECOWAS, the African Union, and development partners, WANEP had continued to act as a catalyst in implementing programmes and specific activities that support Africa Peace Agenda.