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The International Military Sports Council (CISM) has honoured the ECOWAS Commission for the contributions it has been making to the development of military sports in West Africa through the ECOWAS Youth and Sports Development Centre (EYSDC).

The honour which is also in recognition of the ECOWAS’ support for the ideals of CISM, was bestowed during the opening of the 41st General Assembly of the Council on the 12th of June 2017 at the Ministry for National Defence and Veterans, in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.

At the ceremony, hosted by the West African Liaison Office (WALO/OLAO) of CISM, the Secretary General of the world military sports body, Col. Dorah Mamby Koita, who presided over the awards, conferred on the President of the ECOWAS Commission Mr. Marcel de Souza, the medal of Commandeur of the Order of Merit of CISM, while the Director of the EYSDC, Mr Francis Chuks Njoaguani received the award of Officier of the Order of Merit of CISM.

The ECOWAS Commission President’s award was received on his behalf by Ambassador Mohamed Diakite, Resident Representative of the President to Burkina Faso.

Other recipients at the ceremony included the Minister of Defence and Veterans, Mr. Jean Claude Bouda and the Minister of Sports and Entertainment of Burkina Faso, Dr Tahirou Bangré.

It will be recalled that the activities of WALO, which had witnessed a lull since 2012, due to inadequate funding, were boosted earlier in 2017 when the ECOWAS Commission, in response to the recommendation by the EYSDC, signed a 5-year grant agreement, offering the regional body some financial life line for its activities.

The armed forces of fourteen ECOWAS member States are members of WALO, which promotes development and integration through military sports with the slogan “Friendship through sports”.

A volleyball tournament is being held on the margins of the 41st General Assembly of CISM, with the national military volleyball teams of 8 member countries participating.

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