By John Okeke
The ECOWAS Parliament will meet for its 2021 First Extraordinary Session from March 29 to April 2, 2021 in Freetown, Sierra Leone.
In a release from the the ECOWAS Parliament , Communication Division said the highlight of the session will center on its consideration and adoption of the draft strategic plan for the fifth legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament.
It said,”the Strategic Plan is a framework document which guides the programs and activities of the Parliament under the current legislature.
“It clearly states the vision, mission, goals and objectives of the institution and takes into account the achievements of previous legislatures while considering the main political, economic, social and environmental changes underway in the West African region particularly, and in the world, in general.
“The ECOWAS region, like the rest of the world, has been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and its attendant dislodging of pre-2020 normal life-style,” it said .
It continued,” therefore, the session will be held in a regional and international context, as the institution remains cognizant of the continued health crisis.
” In this regard, the West African Health Organization (WAHO), the ECOWAS specialized institution responsible for coordinating the region-wide intervention against the coronavirus, will appraise Parliament with the most current information on the status of the pandemic in the sub-region.
“This Extraordinary Session will be preceded by a parliamentary seminar tagged with the theme: “involvement of members of the ECOWAS Parliament in monitoring the implementation of the Protocol relating to the Community levy”.
The Community levy (0.5% imposed on goods from non-ECOWAS member states) is the main source of funding for the ECOWAS budget, from 70 to 90% of overall revenue,” the release said.
” However, the reality is that remittances by Member States into the Community fund accounts remain low. This seminar is part of the continuation of Parliament’s efforts to make a significant contribution to the resolution of the challenges that arise in the course of implementing the Protocol relating to the Community Levy,” it added.