Declaration of Political Principles of the ECOWAS (A/DCL.1/7/91) ABUJA , 4 - 6 JULY 1991 (Excerpts)
WE, HEADS OF STATE AND GOVERNMENT OF THE ECONOMIC
COMMUNITY OF WEST AFRICAN STATES (ECOWAS),
MEETING in Authority in Abuja , Federal Republic of Nigeria on 4,5 and 6 July 1991 ;
COMMITTED to the imperative of upholding the ideals of the Treaty establishing ECOWAS;
DETERMINED to realize the aims and objectives of ECOWAS especially the integration of the countries of our sub-region through the harmonization of our national economic, social and political policies;
REAFFIRMING the objectives of promoting better relations among ourselves by ensuring a stable and secure political environment, in which our peoples can live in freedom under the law and in true and lasting peace, free from any threat to or attempt against their security, in which we can pursue a speedy and effective realization of the objectives of ECOWAS;
DETERMINED to concert our efforts to promote democracy in the sub-region on the basis of political pluralism and respect for fundamental human rights as embodied in universally recognized international instruments on human rights and in the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights;
HEREBY DECLARE our full adherence to the following principles in order to enhance the prospects of advancing our economic cooperation and integration in a political environment of peace, security and stability:
1. We reaffirm the provisions of the Protocol on Non-Aggression adopted on 22 April 1978 and our commitment to securing peace and maintaining stability in the ECOWAS sub-region by promoting increasingly better relations among ourselves, strengthening good neighborliness and ensuring conditions in which our peoples can live in freedom under the law and in true and lasting peace, free from any threat to or against their security.
4. We will respect human rights and fundamental freedoms in all their plentitude including in particular freedom of thought, conscience, association, religion or belief for all our peoples without distinction as to race, sex, language or creed.
5. We will promote and encourage the full enjoyment by all our peoples of their fundamental human rights, especially their political, economic, social, cultural and other rights inherent in the dignity of the human person and essential to his free and progressive development.
6. We believe in the liberty of the individual and in his inalienable right to participate by means of free and democratic processes in the framing of the society in which he lives. We will therefore strive to encourage and promote in each our countries, political pluralism and those representative institutions and guarantees for personal safety and freedom under the law that are our common heritage.
8. We rededicate ourselves and reaffirm our collective determination to take all necessary measures to ensure the speedy and effective realization of the aims and objectives enshrined in the ECOWAS Treaty and related instruments and to fulfill in good faith all our obligations under them.
IN FAITH WHEREOF, WE, THE HEADS OF STATE AND GOVERNMENT OF THE ECONOMIC COMMUNITY OF WEST AFRICAN STATES (ECOWAS) HAVE SIGNED THIS DECLARATION.
DONE AT ABUJA , THIS 6TH DAY OF JULY.