News / Africa

ECOWAS to Increase Security Collaboration over Nigeria Abduction

Mothers of the missing Chibok school girls abducted by Boko Haram Islamists gather to receive informations from officials, May 5, 2014.
Mothers of the missing Chibok school girls abducted by Boko Haram Islamists gather to receive informations from officials, May 5, 2014.
Peter Clottey
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has intensified collaboration with Nigeria’s government to combat cross border terrorist activities carried out by Islamic militant group, Boko Haram, says ECOWAS communication director  Sonny Ugoh.

Ugoh says the regional bloc is also working with other neighboring regional organizations including the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) to improve security in their member states, following the abduction of more than 200 school girls by the Nigeria-based Islamic militant group Boko Haram.

“There is a collective sense that ECOWAS is willing and determined to support the Nigerian government to address this menace, because what affects one member state affects the others that is the spirit of the ECOWAS Integration project.  There is a sense of solidarity [and] the value for the support of each other,” said Ugoh.

His comments follow a U.N. Security Council demand for an unconditional release of the girls abducted by Boko Haram militants.  The abduction has attracted worldwide condemnation after group leader Abubakar Shekau threatened to sell the girls into slavery.

The United States, France, Britain, China and other international bodies including Interpol have pledged support to the government in Abuja in a global effort to search and free the abducted school-girls.

The chairman of the ECOWAS commission, Ghanaian President John Dramani Mahama issued a solidarity statement to Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan to assure him of the regional bloc’s support to combat the Boko Haram militants.

“There is recognition, both locally and internationally, that this is an unacceptable behavior.  And in response to that the international community has risen to support the ECOWAS position,” said Ugoh.  “ECOWAS is ready and willing to work with the Nigerian government to see how this [violence] can be addressed, and use the opportunity to also make a point about the need for us to now increase collaboration within West Africa.”

Ugoh says the Sahel region has recently seen a sharp rise in cross border crimes and terrorism, which he says calls for strong collaboration with other regional blocs to combat the trend.

He says working closely with neighboring countries outside West Africa could send a strong signal to terror groups about the international community’s response and determination to defeat terrorism.

“Some of the terrorism issues that we have to deal with have to do with the situation in the Sahel.  So there is a larger issue of the Sahel impact on [us],” said Ugoh.  “We are actively working to have a holistic response to these and then working beyond West Africa with our neighbors to see how we can collaborate in responding to the dynamics and the specifics of this in terms of the various manifestation of terrorism in West Africa.”

Ugoh says there is a unanimous global disgust with the abduction of the school girls.
Clottey interview with Sonny Ugoh, ECOWAS Communication Director
Clottey interview with Sonny Ugoh, ECOWAS Communication Directori
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

You May Like

Obama: I Will Do 'Everything I Can' to Close Guantanamo

US president says prison continues 'to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world' More

Sierra Leone Educates on Safe Ebola Burials

Also, country is improving at rapid response to isolated outbreaks, but health workers need to be even faster, officials say More

Christmas Gains Popularity in Vietnam

Increasingly wealthy Vietnamese embrace holiday due to its non-religious glamor, commercial appeal More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Wilhelm from: Zambia
May 11, 2014 2:49 PM
Despite the many failures and complaints from some citizens of Liberia and Sierra Leone the two countries where Ecowas and its peacekeeping task force Ecomog have intervened militarily to restore order, Ecomog does infact have a commendable record in restoring order and I think it is only logical that Ecomog be called upon to engage not only Boko Haram but also work as suggested by Ugoh with ECCAS in restoring peace to the Central African Republic. This is the type of forward thinking that Africa needs in this day and age of security challenges. I hope and pray this will not just be a discussion but something that materializes into action.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Jane Monheit Christmas Speciali
X
December 22, 2014 8:15 PM
Chanteuse Jane Monheit sings the holiday classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and explains why it’s her favorite song of the season.
Video

Video Jane Monheit Christmas Special

Chanteuse Jane Monheit sings the holiday classic “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and explains why it’s her favorite song of the season.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.

All About America

AppleAndroid