News / Africa

ECOWAS Raises Funds for Guinea Bissau Elections

Map of Guinea Bissau
Map of Guinea Bissau
Peter Clottey
An official of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) says the regional bloc is raising funds to help Guinea Bissau organize elections scheduled for November 24.

Sonny Ugoh, ECOWAS communication director, says Guinea Bissau needs about $19.4 million for the balloting.

“Apart from working with international partners ECOWAS member states are also setting the pace [by] putting together some $12 million to support that process,” said Ugoh. “A determination has been made to the effect that the ECOWAS commission gave $ 3 million, the EU gave $4 million and the UN Development Program $1.5 million.”

Guinea Bissau urged ECOWAS to help finance its elections, saying it lacked the money to organize, and administer, the vote.  

“We are being driven by the sense of solidarity with Guinea Bissau because we want to make sure [the country returns] to constitutionalism; and has an election that will enable them to have a president, [and] members of the legislature,” said Ugoh.

At their recent summit, regional heads of state and government agreed that Guinea Bissau’s interim government should hand over power to an elected administration by the end of this year. Ugoh says the agreement is aimed at ensuring Guinea Bissau citizens can choose their own leaders.

 “This is to ensure that there is election and member states also want to promote democracy and good governance in the region,” said Ugoh.

He says the team of ECOWAS officials was recently in Guinea Bissau to assess the political and the security situation there ahead of the November balloting.

“We have fielded a pre-election finding mission, and this fact finding mission held discussions with all the stakeholders,” said Ugoh. “Two issues were flagged:  one was the issue of funding, which has now been resolved with this enthusiastic international support, and the second issue has to do with the timetable for the elections.”

Ugoh says regional leaders have pledged to support to Guinea Bissau’s embrace of democracy and return to constitutional rule.

“ECOWAS wants to make sure that it accompanies them in this process to ensure that the election takes place,” said Ugoh. “We think that the election is key to restoring the democratic process in that country considering that we are also engaged in defense and security sector reform, which we hope will address all the key challenges, associated with the military and security services so that we can a stable and durable democracy.”
Clottey interview with Sonny Ugoh, ECOWAS' Communications director
Clottey interview with Sonny Ugoh, ECOWAS' Communications directori
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

China to Open Stock Markets to Pension Funds

In unprecedented move, government to soon allow local pension funds to invest up to $94 billion in domestic shares More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs