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I. Coast lifts freeze on ex-officials

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The Ivorian delegation to the ECOWAS Parliament has announced that itsgovernment has finally unfreeze assets of former officials of ex-president LaurentGbagbo following series of negotiations and dialogues.


I. Coast lifts freezeMaking the presentation over the weekend at the 2nd Ordinary Session of theECOWAS Parliament in Abuja, Nigeria, Parliamentarian Diomande Mangasaid the government has also decided to unfreeze the bank accounts of leaders of the former regime as part of moves to consolidate nationalreconciliation efforts.

Parliamentarian Manga also disclosed that theIvorian Prime Minister at a plenary sittingchaired by Parliament Speaker Guillaume KigbaforiSoro in July, approved plans to hold a nationalreferendum on the adoption of a new constitution for the country.

The Ivorian delegation made the disclosure following inquiries fromLiberian lawmaker Rep. Edwin Snowe, who also attended the 2nd Ordinary Session in Abuja. Mr. Manga pointed out that at the end of a secret ballot, 233 PMs, outof the 247 signatories voted in favor of the draft organic law and theorganization of a referendum to adopt a new constitution. He noted that six members voted against, while there were seven abstentions.

According to him, the Independent Electoral Commission of La Coted’Ivoire has fixed October 30, for the referendum on a new constitution. He explained that the Chairman of the election commission announcedthat legislative elections will take place and be concluded byNovember 20 this year, stressing that there will be no changes in theelectoral calendar.

Commenting on the security sector of his country, Mr. Manga indicatedto his ECOWAS colleagues that France will set up a corps of engineers,an artillery battery and an army Light Aviation Detachment, notingthat the detachment will bring the number of French troops in thatWest African State to 900 instead of the current 580.

The Ivorian Parliamentarian told the community that France has alsopromised to provide assistance towards the training of 600 Ivoriansoldiers under a military cooperation agreement between the twocountries.

However, he said that the Ivorian Parliament has passed twolegislations on military programming and security in 2016, emphasizingthat the aim of the laws establishing military programming and theprogramming of internal security forces for 2016-2020 is to providethe defense and security forces with the ideal resources for their sovereign mission and that the laws are also intended to reassure thepopulace.

By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor

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