ECOWAS: Minister push for Brown Card recognition in Francophone countries

Tue, 11 Oct 2016 Source: Maxwell Atuanor Dwirah

The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mr. Emmanuel Bombande has called on the Council of Bureaux of the ECOWAS Brown Card to address issues of Ecowas Brown Card issued by Ghanaian Insurance companies not respected in some member francophone countries when produced as evidence of Motor Vehicle Third Party Insurance cover.

Mr. Bombande made this call when he delivered an opening address on behalf of Hon. Hannah Tetteh at the ongoing 33rd Ordinary Session of the Council of Bureaux of the Scheme in Accra on Tuesday, 11th October, 2016 at the M-Plaza Hotel, Accra.

“Our Ministry recently commissioned a working group to prepare a strategic policy document aimed at articulating Ghana’s strategic interest in ECOWAS. One of the thematic areas of the document was the issue of Migration and Free Movement. In carrying out this task, field studies conducted revealed that ECOWAS Brown Cards issued by Ghanaian insurance companies are not respected in some member francophone countries. As a result, some motorists are harassed for possessing ECOWAS Brown Cards issued in Ghana when produced as evidence of Motor Vehicle Third Party insurance cover”, the statement said.

The Deputy Minister continued that “in view of this, a larger number of haulage vehicle drivers/owners have resorted to buying insurance from other countries to avoid the harassment and inconvenience. This is in no doubt against the tenets of the Protocol, and gives cause to worry. I therefore call on the Council of Bureaux to address this serious anomaly”.

In his welcome address, the Chairman of Ghana National Bureau, Mr. Kwame Ofori said, “The theme for this year’s General Assembly - “The Relationship between the ECOWAS Commission and its Established Institutions and Agencies: The Case of the ECOWAS Brown Card Insurance Scheme” - is most appropriate as it gives us the opportunity to reflect on the role the Brown Card Scheme has played in regional integration over the years and to seek closer collaboration with our parent body the ECOWAS Commission”.

The Chairman of Council of Bureaux, Mr. Leopold Keita explained that in line with the provisions of Protocol A/P1/5/82, the ECOWAS Brown Card Scheme ensures a prompt and fair compensation to victims for losses they sustain from international road traffic accidents. Therefore, on the one hand, it serves as a means facilitating free movement of persons, goods and services between member-states, and on the other hand, as the responsive par excellence insurance cover against liabilities arising from international accidents within our West African sub-region.

Member countries who are in the country to the 3-day Ordinary Session from 11th – 13th October include: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea Conakry, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.

Also present the opening ceremony include Madam Joyce Bawah – Chairperson of the Insurance Commission, Mad. Aretha Duku – President of GIA, Board Members of the National Bureaux and Insurance companies of member countries.

The Closing Dinner and Investiture Ceremony will be held at La Palm Beach Hotel on Thursday, 13th October, 2016 at 7pm

Source: Maxwell Atuanor Dwirah