(Abuja, June 24, 2017:) The Ambassador of the Republic of Liberia to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency Professor Al-Hassan Conteh, has turned over the Chairmanship of ECOWAS Permanent Representatives Council (PRC) to his Togolese counterpart, His Excellency Léné Dimban.
The PRC comprises of Ambassadors and High Commissioners of all the ECOWAS countries accredited to ECOWAS in Abuja.
A release from the Liberian Embassy in Abuja says Ambassador Conteh turned over the mantle to Ambassador Dimban recently during a special meeting of ECOWAS ambassadors and high commissioners which was held in the conference room of the Liberian Embassy.
The turning over was in line with the regional one in which outgoing Chair of the Authority of ECOWAS’ Heads of State and Government, Her Excellency President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, handed over to the President of the Republic of Togo, His Excellency Faure Gnassingbe, during the 51st Summit of ECOWAS that held in Harbel, Liberia earlier this month.
In brief remarks, Ambassador Conteh expressed thanks and appreciation for the collaboration he had from all ECOWAS Ambassadors and high commissioners over the past 12 months.
“Our accomplishments at the Ambassadorial Level are a culmination of efforts made by the three previous Chairs: the Ambassadors of Senegal, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire”, he said.
The outgoing Chair listed the PRC’s contribution towards the resolution of conflicts in the sub-region, the preparation and adoption of a number of enabling documents and preparing the agenda and work programs of the Mediation and Security Council Meetings as some of the accomplishments of the PRC during the 2016-2017 Year.
“We also developed a method for the deployment of Ambassadors to ECOWAS Electoral Observer Missions and other ECOWAS Programs. We started a bi-monthly Meeting with the President of the ECOWAS Commission during which important matters affecting ECOWAS are discussed. We reviewed the Agenda and work programs of the Mediation and Security Council that contributed to the resolution of the conflict in the Gambia, and addressing the political and security situations in Burkina Faso, Mali, Guinea Bissau, and most recently Cote d’Ivoire”, he added.
He stated that the main concern of ECOWAS Permanent Representatives of Member States was how to be relevant as instituted by ECOWAS Protocols, Acts and Decisions.
On that note, Ambassador Conteh recalled that after several engagements, the ECOWAS Commission requested the PRC to draft a Memorandum specifying the nature, status and role of the group of Ambassadors, Permanent Representatives of ECOWAS Member States for transmission to the Ad Hoc Committee in charge of appointing statutory officials and institutional reforms: “Within the required timeframes, we prepared and submitted to the Commission a Memorandum of Understanding, followed by a Declaration on the role of the Permanent Representatives of Member States.”
For his part, Ambassador Dimban, in his acceptance speech, thanked Ambassador Conteh for the successful manner in which the Liberian Ambassador chaired the PRC over the past year.
The Togolese Envoy then tasked his colleagues of their full support which he counts on in his new role.
“Many actions have been achieved. Many more actions need to be achieved and I will need the support of all of you for that”, Ambassador Dimban said via an interpreter.