The decision was taken at the fifth meeting of the Presidential Taskforce on the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Single Currency Programme held in Accra yesterday.
In the chair was President Akufo-Addo, with his colleague presidents of member states of the committee, Issoufou Mahamadou of the Republic of Niger, Co-Chairman; Alassane Ouattara (Cote d’Ivoire); the Governor of the Central Bank of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, who represented Nigerian President, Mahamadu Buhari who was not present.
Also present were Togolese President, Faure Gnassigbe, who happens to be the Chairman of the Conference of Heads of State and Government of ECOWAS and Guinean President Alpha Conde.
After hours of deliberations behind closed door, the taskforce adopted the report of the Committee of Ministers and Governors meeting held on 19th February, 2018 in Accra.
The purpose of the ministerial committee meeting was to propose a revised roadmap for the Single Currency Programme to begin by the 2020 deadline.
Ghana’s Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, who read the communiqué, said they acknowledged the quality of the conclusions, as well as the relevance of the recommendations made by the ministerial committee.
“After deliberating on the agenda items, the Presidential Taskforce reaffirmed their political will to meet the ECOWAS Single Currency Programme deadline by 2020.”
“Apart from that, member states’ reaffirmed their commitment to ratify and implement all relevant ECOWAS protocols and conventions; reaffirmed the gradual approach where member states which meet the convergence criteria can start the monetary union while the other countries join later.”
Section of the gathering at the Presidential Task force meeting
It also emerged that the task force welcomed the progress made by the member states and encouraged them to continue the efforts toward meeting the convergence criteria, strengthening the multilateral surveillance mechanism and adopted the revised road map for accelerating the creation of the ECOWAS single currency on schedule.
They have since instructed all the stakeholders to implement the revised roadmap.
The member states and their central banks reiterated their commitment to funding the ECOWAS Single Currency Programme.
Going forward, they have also invited the Committee of Governors and Convergence Council to hold quarterly meetings on the progress of implementation of planned activities and to regularly report at their biannual sessions.
After deliberations, members of the Presidential Taskforce expressed their profound gratitude to President Akufo-Addo and the government and people of Ghana for what they described as “their warm welcome and excellent arrangements made for the success of the fifth meeting of the taskforce.”
By Charles Takyi-Boadu, Presidential Correspondent