Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja
Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, Wednesday, called on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament to work towards deeper integration and effective security for persons in the sub-region.
Saraki, who made the call when the Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, Hon. Mustapha Cisselo, led other management staff of the parliament on a courtesy call on him in Abuja, also commended the leadership qualities exhibited by Cisselo since his election and urged him to do more in promoting the aims and objectives of the ECOWAS Parliament.
Saraki said: “As I said in my speech at your inauguration, we must continue to ensure the economic integration of the West African sub-region. We must ensure that we do our best to enhance the powers of the ECOWAS parliament so that it becomes effective and not just a place for talk-shop. We must also play our role in seeing that terrorism which is one of the greatest threat to our people gets the necessary collective approach to solve the problem and danger in our region.
“Also, the health sector is one of the areas, that unfortunately, must be carefully attended to because any endemic disease in any of the countries can be easily spread across the region. Therefore, we must work out a collaborative approach to address issues concerning the health of our people,” he said.
He said Nigerian Government through the Senate and the National Assembly would continue to support the ECOWAS parliament especially the new Speaker to succeed in office.
Earlier, Hon. Cisselo noted that Nigeria is the “power house of African integration”, hence the decision of the management of ECOWAS parliament to visit the highest authorities of the country, four months after assumption of office.
“As you are aware, our closest collaborator within the Nigerian Government is the Nigerian parliament. Therefore, we are here to see how we can boost our collaborative efforts in order to achieve the task entrusted to us by our founding fathers,” he said.
He commended the Senate and the House of Representatives for their continuous support and said the ECOWAS parliament would continue to seek the cooperation of the Nigerian legislature towards the realization of the goal of enhancing the powers of the ECOWAS parliament.