Coalition of NGOs urges ECOWAS to resolve Togo crises

Faure Gnassingbe

The Coalition of Non-Governmental Organisations Associated with the United Nations (CUNANGOS) – Department of Public Information (DPI) in Ghana, have urged the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) to resolve the political instability in Togo.

A statement signed by Mr Frank Paakumi, the Co-chair of the CUNANGOS – DPI in Ghana, and copied to the Ghana News Agency said ECOWAS must show appropriate leadership in matters that threaten the political stability, peaceful co-existence and internal cohesion of any member state.

“We call on the regional body to give a clear roadmap with milestones on what steps are been taken to have the political tension and unrest in Togo resolved,” the statement said.

The Coalition urged ECOWAS to move swiftly to establish the needed intelligence on the ground to take an informed position and let ECOWAS stand as a firm mediator.

The statement said multi-party democracy often thrives on the presence of certain principles, the absence of which makes a mockery of the whole practice.

The Coalition called for a time for a peer-to-peer-review on regular basis, the strict adherence to rule of law, protection of fundamental human rights, respect and observance of international treaties and conventions.

The statement recalled that ECOWAS failed to live up to expectation in the Ivory Coast situation.

“But for the swift and timely intervention of the West, particularly the French, civil war would have been the inevitable outcome in the Ivory Coast,” the statement added.

The statement said ECOWAS, as the apex inter-governmental body in the region, “It can no longer continue with conventions and other archaic methods of resolving issues, especially their current modus operandi, and sticking to the status quo when it is evidently clear that these methods are ineffective”.

The statement said, in the face of fretting challenges in the sub-region, which gives fertile grounds for possible political instability in the entire region, “ECOWAS cannot afford a business as usual attitude”.

It said: “ECOWAS cannot stand aloof and pursue the policy of non-interference casually.  Benjamin Franklin once said, ‘Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are’.”

The statement noted: “CUNANGOS as a non-state-actor and part of the broader civil society has vested interest in responsive and proactive regional actors who are held with oversight responsibilities.”

Source: GNA

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