ECOWAS Parliament Elects First Female Speaker

Historic Election of Memounatou Ibrahima as Speaker

The Parliament of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has elected its first female speaker, marking a historic moment for the regional legislative body.

Memounatou Ibrahima from Togo was elected as the new Speaker during the 2024 Second Extraordinary Session of the Sixth Legislature of the ECOWAS Parliament in Kano, Nigeria. Her election follows the rotation of the speakership in alphabetical order, as stipulated by the Supplementary Act on Enhancement of Power.

Transition of Leadership

The previous Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament’s Fifth Legislature was from Sierra Leone. Ibrahima, who served as the Third Deputy Speaker in the Fifth Legislature, has been a member of the ECOWAS Parliament since 2021. She succeeds Senator Barau Jubrin, the Nigerian leader of delegation, who was elected First Deputy Speaker at the inauguration of the Sixth Legislature on April 4, 2024. Jubrin had to act as Speaker to maintain leadership continuity until Ibrahima’s election.

Challenges During Inauguration

The inauguration of the Sixth Legislature on April 4, 2024, faced a challenge as the delegation from the Republic of Togo was absent. The country had not conducted elections to select their representatives for the ECOWAS Parliament at that time.

Ibrahima’s election is a significant milestone for the ECOWAS Parliament, reflecting the progress in gender representation and leadership within the regional body.

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