Ecowas hails Jonathan

ACCRA. — West African leaders paid a glowing tribute to outgoing Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan on Tuesday night.

The leaders of the Economic Community of West African States (Ecowas) said Jonathan’s exemplary democratic behaviour expected of a statesman contributed in a decisive way to the maintenance of peace that followed the publication of the presidential results on March 28 in Nigeria.

In a citation to President Jonathan, the West African leaders exp- ressed their profound gratitude for his outstanding contribution to the deepening of integration process in West Africa.

The citation, read by Ghana’s Foreign Affairs Minister Hanna Tetteh, also praised President Jonathan for his role in the preservation of peace and security in the area, particularly in the qualities he demonstrated as Ecowas chairman, and as chairman of the Regional Contact Group on Guinea Bissau and sole mediator in the Malian crisis.

“We, the heads of state of the Economic Community of West African States, hereby express our goodwill to President Goodluck for all his future undertakings at the end of his noble mission as the head of his country,” the citation read.

President Jonathan expressed his profound appreciation to the leaders for their understanding and co-operation during his tenure as Ecowas chair between 2010 and 2012.

He said the personal rapport and chemistry he enjoyed with each president greatly facilitated decisions and the concrete mea- sures they took on behalf of the sub-region.

“As the new administration takes over, I am confident that the bonds of friendship between Nigeria and each member-state of our cherished organisation and Nigeria’s role within the Ecowas will continue to grow even stronger.”

Goodluck Jonathan, who is expected to hand over power to Moha mmed Buhari, the Nigerian president-elect on May 29, pledged to continue to give his modest support to the progress of the sub-region. — Xinhua.