The co-President of the joint European Union (EU) – African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Parliamentary Assembly, Louis Michel, says the crisis in Europe should not be used as an excuse to cut development aid to developing countries.
“We have to make sure that developing countries are not made victims of our budgetary restrictions”, said Louis Michel at the opening ceremony of the Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) of MEPs and MPs from ACP countries in Lomé, Togo November 21, 2011.
According to a statement sighted on EU’s website by ghanabusinessnews.com, Michel was particularly concerned that European leaders would come under pressure from the markets “to think short-term only”.
Touching on democracy, transparency and security, Mr Michel said democracy had progressed in a spectacular way in West Africa in recent years.
However, he underlined that democratic transitions were “extremely fragile” and “rarely linear” and it was essential that elections should always meet the criteria of transparency.
The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) brings together elected representatives of the European Union and the ACP countries, with MEPs and MPs from 78 states that are signatories to the Cotonou Agreement, which is the basis for ACP-EU development cooperation.
By Ekow Quandzie