ECOWAS participated in the 38th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council and the 34th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) held virtually from 3rd to 4th and from the 6th to 7th of February 2021 respectively.
With the theme “Arts, Culture and Heritage: Levers for Building the Africa We Want”, the Assembly deliberated and considered the report on the Institutional Reform of the AU which includes the Division of Labor between the AU, the RECS/RM and Member States.
It also considered the progress on the African Union response on COVID-19 pandemic in Africa, as well as elections and appointments of the Leadership of the AU Commission, and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the AUDA/NEPAD, among others.
Some outcomes of the deliberations of the session which was chaired by H.E. Felix Antoine Tshisekedi, President of the Democratic Republic of Congo, concerned the elections of Senior Leadership for the AU Commission (2021- 2024), undertaken by the Executive Council which in turn, elected the Commissioners, who are then appointed by the Assembly.
In line with the ECOWAS Heads of States Communique of 2nd February 2021; the Institutional Reforms of the African Union and the goal to improve the efficacy of programme implementation, the AU Executive Council also elected Ambassador Bankole Adeoye from ECOWAS Region (Nigeria) as Commissioner, Political Affairs, Peace and Security.
The session also featured the election of the bureau of the AU’s Assembly for 2022 which consisted of the Chair – Democratic Republic of Congo (Central); 1st Vice Chair – Republic of Senegal (West); Second Vice Chair – Unions of Comoros (East); 3rd Vice Chair – Arab Republic of Egypt (North); Rapporteur- Republic of South Africa (South).
The ECOWAS Delegation to the AU Statutory Meetings was led by H.E. Jean-Claude Kassi Brou – President of ECOWAS Commission. Other members of the delegation were Mr. Mamadou Traore – Commissioner for Industry and Private Sector; Mr. Francis Behanzin, Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security; Dr. Remi Ajibewa – Director of Political Affairs; Mr. Ake Pierre N’guessan, ECOWAS Acting Representative to the African Union;Dr. Onyinye Onwuka, Principal Program Officer International Cooperation, Ms. Adwoa Coleman – Diplomatic Adviser and Ms. Valentine Atonde – Programme Officer, ECOWAS Representation to the AU.
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