ECOWAS Free Movement Helping In Economic Growth – Lawan

Nigeria President of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan has said that the freedom to move between member nations of the Economic Community of West Africa (ECOWAS) is helpful to the sub-regional economic growth.
Lawan said this in a goodwill message at the first ordinary session of ECOWAS parliament at the International Conference Centre, Abuja.
In emphasis, Lawan said the freedom to movement between the member nations has attendant benefits like job creation, reduction in underemployment, stimulation of economic multipliers, and better wellbeing.
He however noted that this cannot happen in an atmosphere of strife, cross-border crimes like banditry, insurgency, drug trafficking, and ceaseless ethno-religious struggles, amidst others.
Speaking about Covid-19 pandemic, Lawan said “Despite unfortunate deaths, our response illustrates our resilience in the face of challenges and emergencies. Lessons from the experience are worthy of note and should be useful in our efforts to achieve set goals, and in resolving other trials.”
He said the primary importance of this session is not only on the need to strengthen and grow democracy and its institutions but similarly in ensuring that the advancements we are making is not reversed.
“We have proved that democracy is representative, inclusive and integrative.
“Implied in these attributes are freedom, rights, happiness and progress.
“Our nations have shown reasonable commitments to exhibiting these values, and we have a duty as parliamentarians and governments to ensure improved realization of these ideals.
“Common to our illustrious histories is a high regard for the interest of the people, trusting that a fulfilment of their quest is a ground for communal and social peace.”
He said that while the ECOWAS protocol on Free Movement of Persons and Goods remains a prized policy, he said insecurity, instability, and conflicts are matters requiring continuous attention.
“As parliamentarians, we must examine the dimensions associated with these occurrences towards appropriate interventions,” Lawan added.

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