Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle, Dr. Zanetor Agyeman-Rawlings says ECOWAS Member States have the responsibility of sharing candid information about developments and vulnerabilities within their territories that require the support of other member states.
She said fighting extremism and piracy cannot be successful if done by individual Member States due to its huge and complex nature.
“Security issues require international collaboration and cooperation and it means member states should be able to draw each other’s attention to happenings within their territories that have the potential of creating vulnerability for the sub-region," she stated.
The MP express worry that while issues of piracy seemed far from Africa many years ago, statistics on maritime crime issued last year showed that about 90 percent of the act was mostly in the Gulf of Guinea.
The huge oil reserves in the West Africa sub-region, she noted, have led to movement of commercial vessels which make it an important region economically but also giving way to the insecurity and piracy to scramble for resources.
Dr. Agyeman-Rawlings added that another factor that contributes to the spread of violent extremism was corruption and the inequitable distribution of resources which results in gaps in local government. This, she noted, creates a vacuum capitalized upon by some of those extremist groups.
Those extremists she continued, then take advantage to radicalize the youth and in some instances provide the necessary amenities that governments fail to provide the communities.
With the Guinean mutiny in mind, the legislator also expressed worry over the taste of some elected leaders to prolong their tenure by amending their constitutions to seek further terms.
She maintained that even though there are issues many do not want to talk about, they are the causes of discontent and instability which can be capitalized by extremists.
“It defeats the purpose of having ECOWAS and AU. Member states are to adhere to the various agreements for the betterment of the citizens,” she emphasized.