A statement said the two-Day workshop, which begins in Accra on Monday, 24 May, 2021, is meant to sensitize and prepare the distinguished member states’ nominees of the CoW to discharge their duties as a supporting organ, created purposefully for Preventive Diplomacy and Mediation interventions in member states within the region.
Being one of the key pillars of the Peace and Security Architecture of ECOWAS, the CoW had previously collaborated with the ECOWAS Commission in the prevention and resolution of conflicts in some member states.
It also facilitated communication channels and confidence-building measures between conflicting parties, and also participated in fact-finding and election observation missions, in conformity with the provisions of Articles 17 and 20 of the 1999 Protocol relating to the Mechanism for Conflict Prevention, Management, Resolution, Peacekeeping and Security.
The Statutes of the Council of the Wise were approved at the 50th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government in December 2016 to further define the mandate, compositions and rules of procedures of the Council as part of the initiative to re-constitute and reposition the Council of the Wise to effectively support the ECOWAS Preventive Diplomacy and Mediation efforts in the Member States.
It would be recalled that ECOWAS pioneered the establishment of CoW in Africa and its successes have been acclaimed farther afield, with a replication of similar mechanisms by the African Union Commission (AUC) and some Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and Regional Mechanisms (RMs) on the continent.
The emerging and variant socio-political tensions generated within the region, reinforces the need to urgently re-constitute the CoW to assist ECOWAS in further delivering on its peace and stability mandate.