The Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa, Sulemana Braimah, has been appointed the Secretary General of a newly-established ECOWAS civil society platform on transparency and accountability in governance.
The new platform, known as the ECOWAS Civil Society Organisations Platform on Transparency and Accountability in Governance (ECSOPTAG) was formally launched at the ECOWAS Commission in Abuja, Nigeria, on April 20 after a two-day meeting of civil society organisations from 11 ECOWAS member states.
The meeting was opened by the Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security of the ECOWAS Commission, Mrs. Halima Ahmed. In her opening address, the Commissioner said the ECOWAS recognises the important role Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) can play in governance processes in member states particularly in the area of what she termed “integrity governance.”
The President of the National Anti-Corruption Institutions in West Africa (NACIWA), Mr. Issoufou Boureima, who chaired the plenary sessions emphasised the critical role of Civil Society Organisations in supporting anti- corruption institutions in the fight against corruption and ensuring good governance.
The Principal Programme Officer for Gender, Youth and Civil Society Organisations at the ECOWAS Commission, Mrs. Violet Ukpayan in her remarks urged civil society organisations to support national and regional efforts to promote good governance within the ECOWAS region.
The meeting featured presentations by experts on several topics including regional, continental and international frameworks on anti-corruption; the roles and responsibilities of CSOs in promoting transparency and accountability in governance; a mapping of transparency and accountability in the ECOWAS region; as well as the governance framework and rules of procedure of the ECSOPTAG.
The Principal Programme Officer for Democracy and Good Governance at the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Eyesan Okorodudu, highlighted efforts being made by the Commission to strengthen good governance and democracy in the region. He therefore called on CSOs in member states to support these efforts by ECOWAS.
At the end of the two day meeting, participants appointed a three-member Executive that will steer the affairs of the platform. Mr. Sulemana Braimah was appointed the Secretary General of the platform with Mr. Assah Gustave, Director of Social Watch in Benin as Advocacy and Communications Sectretary and Mrs. Ana Museuta Ture, Director of Guinean Organisation for Development based in Guinea Bissau as the Financial Controller.