ACHIEVEMENTS OF ECOWAS
- The body has removed all customs duties in the areas of importation and exportation of goods within the sub-region.
- Member states cooperate in the areas of sports and culture.
- ECOWAS has helped to unite the people of member nations irrespective of the differences in ideology, beliefs and so on.
- Formation of ECOMOG: ECOMOG was formed through ECOWAS to help maintain peace in the sub-region and it helped to restore democracy in Liberia and Sierra Leone.
- Member states of ECOWAS spoke against Apartheid in South Africa and neo-colonialism.
- The organization helped in removing all administrative restrictions on trade within the sub-region.
- Member states mediate in disputes among states, e.g. Nigeria and Chad, Liberia, Sierra Leone and so on.
- The body has eliminated obstacles to movements of persons, services and capital within the sub-region.
PROBLEMS OR WEAKNESSES OF ECOWAS
- Language barrier: Member states of ECOWAS do not speak the same language.
- Free movement: The free movement as provided by the Charter of ECOWAS is no longer automatic.
- Different Ideology: Difference in ideology hinders the progress of the organization.
- Common currency: The organization does not have a common currency.
- Political instability: Frequent change in government of some countries hinders the successful operation of the organization.
- Poor transportation and communication: These are some of the problems facing the organization
- Similarity of products: Member states of ECOWAS manufacture similar products which makes trade among ECOWAS states difficult.
- Fear of domination: Smaller states within the ECOWAS sub-region are afraid of being dominated by the larger states.
- Shortage of fund: Most member states of ECOWAS do not pay their dues which hinders the organization form executing its projects.
- Colonial masters: The political and economic activities of member states are tied to that of their former colonial master. So, their first loyalty goes to their former colonial masters not to ECOWAS.