President Muhammadu Buhari has called for collaboration among West African countries in tackling its challenges including the Omicron COVID-19 variant of concern.
President Buhari’s Spokesman, Femi Adesina in a statement, said the President made the call on Sunday when he received other West African leaders for the 60th Economic Community for West African States (ECOWAS) ordinary session in Abuja.
Nigeria’s President said for the West African region to be peaceful and prosperous, governments must create opportunities for sustainable development of their citizens.
He said: “Today’s realities remind us of the need to continue to forge stronger solidarity in order to address the new challenges, including the current third wave of the pandemic and its Omicron variant.
“I am glad that the Commission of the Economic Community of the West African States and the West Africa Health Organization is continuing to work with our respective national disease control centres to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on our people and subregion
“At this 60th Ordinary Session, we have before us several issues of critical importance to the community as listed on our agenda.
“I would, therefore, urge us to carefully consider the issues to be presented to us and take well-informed concrete decisions for the welfare and well-being of our peoples and the future of our community.
“The challenges of coronavirus and the catastrophic consequences posed on our socioeconomic environment continues to torment us.
“The regional resilience, determination and resolution of working together in solidarity with each other, assisted us greatly to lessen the burden of the pandemic.’’
President Buhari added that democracy in the sub-region is being challenged by the political crises in Mali and Guinea.
“We are facing a network of criminals, including terrorism,” he said.
“All of these challenges require our collective action to work in concert with each other to programmatically address and provide our people better prospects in life.
“As a people, we aspire to create a borderless, peaceful, prosperous and where people have the capacity to access and harness its resources through the creation of opportunities for sustainable development, job creation and environmental preservation.’’