Liberia, other African nations praised

Liberian Ambassador Nyenabo (center) at the conference

Liberian Ambassador Nyenabo (center) at the conference

The 101st African Caribbean and Pacific States Council of Ministers Conference opened Tuesday at the ACP-House in Brussesls, Belgium with commendations for Liberia for ending the scourge of Ebola and calls for support to Guinea and Sierra Leone as they fight to end the spread of the Ebola Virus Disease in their respective countries.

The President of the ACP Council of Ministers and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and External Trade of the Republic of Vanuatu, Satu Kilman Livtuvanu said Liberia’s success in ending the Ebola virus disease is remarkable and calls for celebrations and at the same time appealed to ACP member states to give their continue support to Liberia’s two other neighbours, Guinea and Sierra Leone as they make gains against the spread of the disease.

The ACP president commended Nigeria, Benin, Togo and Namibia for the successful conduct of their respective presidential and legislative elections. He called on other ACP member states to emulate the good examples of those countries in their elections and ensure a smooth transition in their countries.

Liberia’s Ambassador to Belgium, the ACP and the European Union, Isaac W. Nyenabo who is attending the session, commended the President of the ACP Livtuvanu and Member States of th ACP on behalf of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and the people of Liberia for the enormous support the country received in many forms from the EU and the ACP toward Liberia’s fight in ending the Ebola virus disease, and its continuous support towards sustainable economic development and growth, peace and security, good governance and the builidng of infrastructures including health and agriculture.

Ambassador Nyenabo said the support and solidarity received were not just overwhelming but helped greatly in adding to the fight that has today finally made Liberia an Ebola free country. He told journalists at the forum that Liberia was declared Ebola free and certificated on May 9th, 2015 after going for over 45 days without any case of Ebola.

He called for support for Liberia’s post Ebola recovery program, adding this will help in addressing the reform in the country’s economy and devastated health care system, which are in serious need of help from all of Liberia’s international friends and people of good will.

In his report to the Ministerial Conference, the Secretary General of the ACP, Dr. Patrick Gomes said the ACP has laid out a number of ambitious plans for a transitional and repository preparation period for the period between 2015 to 2020 which intends to promote South-South and Triangular cooperation.

Dr. Gomes said the ACP over the period of years will promote trade, industrialization and regional integration, building sustainable, resilient and creative economies,supporting global justice and human security, advancing the rule of law and good governance and looking deeply into financing for development programs.

The ACP Secretary General said to achieve these ambitions, the group is trying to re-direct its focus and dirctions to ensure that the ACP Group serves as a facilitator for international development cooperation, by building on its unique experience in development programs and political dialogues.

He said the ACP will pursue an idea that will shift the group toward Trade Finance and Investment Facility and a long-term development fund in order to address the critical issue of financial sustainability.

He noted that this can be achieved through preserving and enhancing the participatory nature of the group governance mechanisms to ensure that they do not just remain relevant and accountable but to increase the democratic legitimacy of its actions.

Dr. Gomes said the ACP celebrates it 40th Anniversary on June 5th which commemorates the signing of the Georgetown Agreement which brought about the formation of the ACP Group.

The 101st ACP Council of Ministers Meeting which runs from May 26-27 will be followed by the 40th ACP-EU Council of Ministers Conference from May 28 to 29 at the European Union Building in Brussells. 

The African Caribean and Pacific Group of States(ACP) is an inter-governmental organization created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. It is composed of African, Caribbean and Pacific States which are signitories to the agreement between the ACP and the European Union refer to as the ACP-EU ”Partnership Agreement” or the ”Cotonou Agreement” which was signed in 2000, in Cotonou, Benin.

The ACP is the largest inter-governmental association of developing countries with a permanent scretariat. The group comprises of 48 Sub-Saharan African States, 15 Pacific Countries and 16 Caribbean States.

Isaac C. Yeah