23.03.2004 General News

Kufuor, ECOWAS in critical implementation point - Agyepong

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Accra, March 23, GNA - President J.A. Kufuor and colleague West African leaders have resolved to move into critical implementation point in their priority programme under the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD), Presidential Spokesperson Kwabena Agyepong has reiterated.

"They have committed themselves to an action oriented approach to the relevant protocols and treaties in moving the sub-region forward," he said in an interview with Radio France International (RFI) after last weekend's two-day meeting of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) summit.

Mr Agyepong explained that President Kufuor's five priority areas with vigorous infrastructure development as the top most, was inspired by the undertaking of the regional leaders to fashion out a common development plan in regularizing the socio-economic defects of the region.

He said President Kufuor, like his counterparts, has "tailor-made" his policies to fit into the regional agenda of accelerating infrastructure projects including road transport and energy and telecommunication.

He cited the government's continuous efforts to complete the three arterial roads from Accra-Kumasi, Accra-Cape Coast and Accra-Aflao, as a genuine commitment to the ECOWAS highway or the trans-coastal route project.

On what he termed concrete steps taken to actualise previous issues discussed at the various meetings, Mr Agyepong mentioned the considerable easing of tension along the West Coast, thereby eliminating political suspicions that trigger conflict. Besides, "the mutual trust established among the current crop of West African leaders are positive testament of the regional integration agenda," he held.

He said leaders of the region are more determined to advance the course of development in their respective countries rather than turn summits into talk shop and later return home to pursue the agenda of undermining each other's efforts.

He recognized as positive signs "the fresh chemistry, the renewed building of trust and frank discussion" exhibited by the Heads of State at the Accra Summit, as desirable for proper regional integration.

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