Ecowas elects Niger president as new leader, adopts ECO as new currency

Monday July 1 2019

Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou.

Niger's President Mahamadou Issoufou in Niamey on February 26, 2016. The Authority of Ecowas Heads of State and Government elected him as the chair for a one-year term. PHOTO | ISSOUF SANOGO | AFP 

MOHAMMED MOMOH
By MOHAMMED MOMOH
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The Authority of Ecowas Heads of State and Government has elected President Mahamadou Issoufou of Niger as the chairman for a one-year term and adopted ECO as the name of the single currency to be issued in January 2020.

President Issoufou was elected at the 55th Ordinary Session of the Ecowas leaders on Saturday in Abuja, taking over from President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria.

A communiqué read by Mr Mustapha Suleiman, Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs Permanent Secretary, said the leaders lauded President Buhari for his unrelenting commitment to regional integration.

Ecowas also agreed to hold its next ordinary session on December 21 in Abuja.

The leaders congratulated the Ministerial Committee on the single Currency for the progress in the implementation of the revised roadmap.

The Authority instructed the Ecowas Commission to collaborate with the West African Monetary Agency.

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The leaders also instructed the commission to work with the West African Monetary Institute and the central banks to accelerate the implementation of the revised roadmap with regard to the symbol of the single currency.

President Issoufou said the revised roadmap still stipulated that the single currency would be issued in January 2020.

“We have not changed that but we will continue with assessment between now and then.

The heads of government and state of 13 of the 15 member states were in attendance. They were from Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Togo.

Cape Verde was represented by Mr Julio Cesar Lopes, the Regional Integration minister, while Senegal was represented by Mr Amadou Ba, the Foreign Affairs minister.

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