The China-aided construction of the permanent headquarters of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS headquarter) began on Sunday in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja. To consolidate the regional bloc’s operations in one complex, a departure from operating at three different locations in Abuja.
The groundbreaking ceremony to formally start the construction of the new headquarters was carried out by at least three West African leaders. These leaders included Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and his counterparts from Guinea Bissau and Sierra Leone.
The President of the ECOWAS Commission, Omar Alieu Touray, and the Chinese ambassador to Nigeria, Cui Jianchun, were also present.
Remarks on the construction work on the ECOWAS headquarter
Cui said, “The fact that China is funding and building the new ECOWAS headquarters is a clear indication of its support for the organization’s activities. And of the long-standing friendship between China and the West African nations.”
Buhari described the project as a sign of China’s commitment to ECOWAS. Saying that it will contain the three main institutions of the regional bloc. Including the ECOWAS Secretariat, and the Community Court of Justice. As well as the ECOWAS Parliament.”
Buhari said, “The project, managed by a Chinese company, will be our home and a regional rallying point. Furthermore, it will also symbolize the member state’s continued commitment to progress and regional integration.”
According to Touray, who expressed gratitude to the Chinese government, the event commemorated a very important day in ECOWAS history.
He said that the ECOWAS Commission’s ability to house all of its employees in one location thanks to the new ECOWAS headquarters will lead to operational efficiencies, lower expenses, and enhanced productivity.