The Sierra Leone Delegation attending the 110th session of ACP Council of Ministers and the 9th Summit of ACP Heads of State and Governments is led by the Honourable Dr. Francis Mustapha Kaikai, Minister of Planning and Economic Development. This delegation also comprises the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Honourable Solomon Jamiru; the Sierra Leone Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium, HE Samuel Tamba Musa; HE Peter Joseph Francis, the Sierra Leone High Commissioner to Kenya; the Deputy Director of European Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Sia Annie Tejan; the Director of Development Assurance and Coordination Office (DACO), Kawusu Kebbay; the Minister Plenipotentiary Sierra Leone High Commission in Kenya and Delegation Coordinator, Abdul Karim Kargbo; and the Head of Chancery Sierra Leone High Commission in Kenya, Juliana SH Fallah.
Meanwhile at the 110th Session of the ACP Council of Ministers, Ministers will appoint the next Secretary General for the term 2020 to 2025. The tenure of the current Senior Management Team expires on February 28, 2020.
It could be recalled, according to the organizers that the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement, signed in Cotonou on June 23, 2000, entered into force in April 2003, was concluded for a 20-year period from 2000 to 2020 but revised in 2005 and 2010 in accordance with the revision clause to re-examine the Agreement every five years. It is the most comprehensive partnership agreement between developing countries and the European Union. Since 2000, it has been the framework for EU’s relations with 79 countries from Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific (ACP). In 2010, ACP-EU cooperation was adapted to new challenges such as climate change, food security, regional integration, State fragility and aid effectiveness.
In a statement published by the Secretariat, the ACP Secretary General, Dr. Patrick I. Gomes has underscored the crucial importance of this 9th Summit, characterizing it as “a decisive opportunity to secure the ACP leadership’s endorsement, in principle, of the Post-Cotonou Agreement, with a view to its signing in early 2020”.
Substantive issues are tabled for discussion at the Ministerial meetings, he says, and “we look forward to exploring how we can advance the commitment to multilateralism by the ACP heads of state and government to achieve the United Nations 2030 Agenda, and so meet current and future needs of citizens across Africa, the Caribbean and Pacific regions”.
ACP Summits take place on average, every three years in an ACP Member State. They give ACP leaders from the 79-member ACP Group an opportunity to review the major developments of interest and concern to its members on the international scene in general, and in ACP States in particular.
At this Summit, ACP leaders will define the principal orientations of the Group’s general policy for the coming years and provide the Council of Ministers with appropriate directives for its implementation. In addition, the Summit will take stock of the Group’s cooperation with the European Union, its key development partner.
The first ACP Summit was held in Libreville, Gabon, on November 6-7, 1997, during which the ACP leaders undertook to meet on a regular basis. Consequently, ACP heads of state and government have met every two years on average, in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) on November 25-26, 1999; in Nadi (Fiji) on July 18-19, 2002; in Maputo (Mozambique) on June 23-24, 2004; in Khartoum (Sudan) on December 7- 8, 2006; and in Accra (Ghana) on October 2-3, 2008; Equatorial Guinea (Malabo) December 13-14, 2012; Papua New Guinea (Port Moresby) June 31 May to June 1, 2016.
ACP is an organization created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. The ACP Group’s main goals centre around the sustainable development of its member states and their gradual integration into the global economy; coordination of the activities of the ACP Group in the framework of the implementation of the ACP-EU Partnership Agreements; consolidation of unity and solidarity among ACP states and establishing and consolidating peace and stability in a free and democratic society.