By Amin Kef (Ranger)
In a strong show of commitment to safeguard and deepen democracy in Sierra Leone, His Excellency President Julius Maada Bio on Saturday December 23, 2023 played host to his Ghanaian and Senegalese counterparts, His Excellencies President Nana Akufo-Addo and President Macky Sall, respectively, at the State House in Freetown.
This high-profile meeting was also attended by Dr Omar Alieu Touray, the President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission. The leaders gathered to advance ongoing discussions on mechanisms to guard the West African sub-region against unconstitutional changes of government.
At the heart of the agenda was the examination of the failed coup attempt that occurred on November 26th, as well as the ongoing investigations surrounding the incident. The leaders expressed their collective disapproval of any forms of undemocratic changes of government and pledged to maintain their vigilance in protecting democratic norms in the region.
In addition to the coup discussion, the Heads of State also deliberated on the ECOWAS Security Mission to Sierra Leone. They explored strategic security plans and their implementation within the region. Such collaborative efforts are expected to bolster regional security, thereby ensuring a stable environment that is conducive for the growth of democracy.
Significantly, President Bio’s role as the ECOWAS Envoy on the political situation in Niger was also a subject of consideration. As an Envoy, President Bio is expected to monitor and facilitate processes that will strengthen the democratic fabric of Niger. The leaders expressed their support for his role and emphasized the need for a harmonized approach in dealing with political challenges in the region.
This meeting underlines the determination of West African leaders to stand together in the face of threats to democracy and regional stability. It is a noteworthy stride in the ECOWAS-led efforts to fortify democratic structures and promote peace and security within the sub-region.