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25.06.2022 21:57 News >> Gabon, Togo Join Commonwealth Association

Gabon, Togo Join Commonwealth Association

Both Francophone African countries finalize years long admission efforts.

Togo and Gabon were admitted to the Commonwealth of Nations, bringing the number of countries in the bloc to 56, an official announced on Saturday.
The two historically French-speaking countries were officially admitted to the grouping at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting held in Rwanda's capital city Kigali, with its new chairperson, Rwandan President Paul Kagame.
Admission into the Commonwealth is based on assessment of several standards such as the democratic process, good governance, and rule of law, explained Patricia Scotland, the secretary-general of the organization.
It was at the end of the meeting's consultation of heads of state and government that the decision was taken.
The two African countries also were never British colonies, which the large organization of now 56 members originally sought to bring together.
Togo's Foreign Minister Robert Dussey had told reporters that the country's motivation for joining the Commonwealth was to expand its diplomatic, political, and economic network.
Gabonese Foreign Minister Michael Moussa Adamo had also said that joining the Commonwealth would boost the country's economic diversification, while maintaining its relations with France.
Gabon's President Ali Bongo, a fluent English speaker, believes that joining the Commonwealth is about modernization.
The Central African nation's process of formally joining the Commonwealth started about five years ago, while that of Togo, located in West Africa, began in 2014.
Rwanda became a member of the grouping in 2009. While the Commonwealth is an association of former British colonies, Rwanda, like Mozambique, which joined in 1995, also was never colonized by the British.
Held under the theme "Delivering a Common Future: Connecting, Innovating, Transforming," latest meeting of the heads of governments from 54 Commonwealth countries discussed ways how the bloc could transform societies in contemporary times. -



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