Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin
TRADITIONAL and religious leaders in the Kyebi, Akyem Abuakwa area have entered into an agreement to partner with the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission to implement the ‘Community Vision 2050’.
This follows a “consultative meeting” between the two bodies held on February 25 and 26 at Kyebi.
The meeting sought to provide an opportunity for the commission as well as the traditional and religious leaders to take note of the achievements, challenges and more importantly, the opportunities that existed for effective collaboration among them.
A release signed by Okyenhene Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin on behalf of the leaders, commended efforts by the ECOWAS Commission in addressing the developmental challenges faced by the region, and pledged to work together with the commission to facilitate the achievement of the goals the new Community Vision 2050.
“We pledge our support to work with ECOWAS in the areas of peace building – conflict resolution and mediation as enshrined in the peace and security architecture of ECOWAS; cultural exchanges including sporting activities as well as local cultural and arts exhibitions and community enlightenment,” they stated.
Other areas also include facilitating agricultural programs among youths, environmental protection, promotion of inter-religious harmony, border security and prevention of cross border criminality and citizen identification.
While commending their “holistic, inclusive and innovative” approach to the analysis of the region’s development challenges and economic policy formulation, Osagyefuo Ofori-Panin also implored the commission to pay particular attention to issues relating to the expansion of agriculture and agribusiness in the project, given its great potential to provide employment for youth and ensure food security.
These efforts, he advised, “should take into account the importance of the livestock sub-sector for the rural areas and lead to mechanisms for the prevention and resolution of conflicts between herders and farmers.”
He also stressed the need to pay greater attention to education and health issues, so as not to exclude anyone in the fight against poverty.
“To this end, vulnerable groups including the handicapped, children and women must be prioritized as well as the issue of employability of young people,” he added.
He further called on the commission to “establish a permanent consultative forum for traditional and religious leaders of member states” where they will meet at least once a year, with standing executives to manage the affairs of the round table of traditional and religious leaders within the framework of the implementation of the Community Vision 2050.
By Nii Adjei Mensahfio