EXTRAORDINARY SESSION OF THE ECOWAS AUTHORITY OF HEADS OF STATE AND GOVERNMENT

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Videoconference, 2 February 2021

FINAL COMMUNIQUE

1. The Authority of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) met in an Extraordinary Session on 2 February 2021 via videoconference, under the chairmanship of H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, and Chair of the Authority, in preparation for the 34th ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union on the election of the new management team of the African Union Commission.

2. Present at the Summit were the under-listed ECOWAS Heads of State or their duly mandated representatives:
H.E. Roch Marc Christian Kabore, President of Burkina Faso
H.E. Jorge Carlos de Almeida Fonseca, President of the Republic of Cabo Verde

H.E. Alassane Ouattara, President of the Republic of Cote d’lvoire

COMMUNAUTE ECONOMIQUE
DES ETATS DE L’AFRIQUE DE L’OUEST

ECONOMIC COMMUNITY OF WEST AFRICAN STATES

Original: French

H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana H.E. Prof. Alpha Conde, President of the Republic of Guinea

H.E. Umaro Sissoco Embalo, President of the Republic of Guinea Bissau H.E. Georges Manneh Weah, President of the Republic of Liberia

H.E. Macky Sall, President of the Republic of Senegal
H.E. Julius Maada Bio, President of the Republic of Sierra Leone
H.E. Faure Essozimna Gnassingbe, President of the Togolese Republic. H.E. Yemi Osinbajo, Vice-President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria H.E. Brigi Rafini, Prime Minister of the Republic of Niger
H.E. Moctar Ouane, Prime Minister of Transition of the Republic of Mali H.E. Aurélien Agbenonci, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Benin.

3. The session was also attended by H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, President of ECOWAS Commission.

4. The Heads of State and Government took note of the Memorandum on the selection of the Chairperson of the African Union for the 2022 – 2023 period and the proposed mechanism for the nomination of countries in coming years. They also took note of the Report of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers on the harmonisation of Member States’ applications for positions in international organisations. Lastly, the Heads of State and Government took note of the Memorandum on the implementation of the ECOWAS institutional reform.

5. They commended the quality of the memoranda and reports as well as the relevant recommendations contained therein.

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6. The Authority, after deliberations, endorsed the main recommendations contained in the different reports, and then considered the following specific issues:

On the nomination of the ECOWAS Member State to chair the African Union

7. The Authority nominates the Republic of Senegal as ECOWAS candidate to chair the African Union for the 2022 – 2023 period. It instructs the President of the ECOWAS Commission to take the necessary steps to immediately notify the African Union Commission of the nomination.

8. The Authority also instructs the President of the Commission to propose, for adoption, at the next Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government, a clear mechanism for the rotation of candidatures to ensure that each Member State has a legitimate opportunity to chair the Assembly of the African Union.

On the endorsement of Member States’ applications for international positions

9. The Authority agreed on the order of priority of the Commissioner positions for which ECOWAS nationals are still standing for election by the Assembly of the African Union and made the necessary arbitrations between Member States putting forward candidates for the same position. The Authority decides to prioritise support for the candidature of Nigeria to the post of Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security. Summit

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decided that the second Commissioner position to be allocated to the West Africa Region will be filled by Burkina Faso, taking into account the gender parity.

On the implementation of ECOWAS institutional reform

10. The Authority reiterates its commitment to the objectives of improved performance and operational efficiency that underpin the institutional reform process, in order to promote the implementation of integration programmes geared towards the economic and social development of the region.

11. The Authority welcomes the status of implementation of the ECOWAS institutional reform, particularly with regard to enhanced financial management and internal control of the Institutions. The Authority notes that the tenure of the current statutory appointees comes to an end in February 2022, and that there is a need to discuss the optimal structure of the new Commission and the other Institutions, modalities for allocation of statutory positions, as well as efforts to streamline ECOWAS operating costs.

12. To this end, the Authority calls on H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo- Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, with the support of the Ministerial Ad hoc Committee on Institutional Reform, to lead reflection on the issue. A Report on this point will be submitted to the Ordinary Session of the Authority to be held in June 2021. To that effect, a general consensus emerged from the Heads of State and Government that H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo- Addo continue for a second term as Chair of the ECOWAS Authority to oversee the implementation of the Reform.

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13. The Heads of State and Government express sincere appreciation to H.E. Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of the Republic of Ghana, Chair of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, for his leadership in steering the affairs of the Community.

Done via Videoconference, this 2nd day of February 2021 THE AUTHORITY

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