U.N. chief congratulates ECOWAS on its 40th anniversary

Mohamed Ibn Chambas
Mohamed Ibn Chambas | Contributed photo
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) celebrated its 40th anniversary on Thursday.

Mohamed Ibn Chambas, special representative of United Nations (U.N.) Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and head of the United Nations Office for West Africa (UNOWA), attended a celebratory event on Thursday in Abuja, Nigeria, where he read a statement from Ki-moon.

Ki-moon congratulated ECOWAS and said the organization had "made important progress in promoting economic growth and development, and advancing peace and prosperity for the people of West Africa."

Ki-moon praised ECOWAS' dedication, focus and teamwork, but said "formidable challenges lie ahead across our shared agenda of peace and security, sustainable development and human rights."

Ki-moon urged ECOWAS officials to collaborate more with the U.N.

"You can be sure that the United Nations will remain your trusted partner every step of the way," his statement said.

Ki-moon also said ECOWAS had made 2015 "a year for global action," congratulating the group for the many initiatives it launched during the year, including the Addis Ababa Action Agenda for development finance, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Climate Change Agreement.

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