ECOWAS: 3-day Coordination, Capacity Building Workshop for Multi-Stakeholders

Pic Ghana Ecowas
Pic Ghana Ecowas

The Directorate of Humanitarian and Social Affairs in the Department of Human Development and Social Affairs organized a 3-day Coordination and Capacity Building Workshop for Multi-Stakeholders from 4th to 6th April 2023 in the Republic of Ghana.

The Workshop was aimed at the development and adoption of a Roadmap; as well as the establishment of an ECOWAS Integrated Protection and Human Security Coordination Mechanism (ECO-PHSICM). The activity will also strengthen the Protection and Human Security architecture in all ECOWAS Member States and Ghana is the eight Member State in which this intervention has held.

At the Opening Ceremony, the ECOWAS Director for Humanitarian and Social Affairs, Dr Sintiki Tarfa Ugbe, represented by Mr. Olatunde Olayemi, Programme Officer, Trafficking in Persons, welcoming the participants, said the ECOPHISM is a recognition of the complex linkages that exist between varied protection and human security vulnerabilities and risks such as TIP, VAC, SGBV, effects of armed conflicts and situations of generalized violence, the situation of vulnerable migrants which are all interconnected and necessitates improved coordination and adherence to standards across the protection and human security response landscape; the mechanism, once established in Ghana, will contribute to the promotion of the rights of people to live in freedom and dignity with equal opportunities.

Remarks were delivered by the ECOWAS Resident Representative to the Republic of Ghana Ambassador Babagana Wakil, who welcomed the participants and extended the warm regards of H.E the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Alieu Touray. He appreciated the initiative which he says comes in good time as Ghana grapples with the aftermath of the COVID 19 Pandemic and current events, such as the war in Ukraine. He wished participants good deliberations in strategizing to enhance human Security for all.

Representing the Ministry of Foriegn Affairs and Regional Integration, Ambassador Perpetua O. Dufu, Coordinating Director, Multilateral & International Organisations, in her opening remarks, welcomed the participants on behalf of the Government of Ghana and recognized the importance of the workshop, given the issues with which the region is faced, including conflict and violent extremism impacting on the security, safety and dignity of inviduals.

The Workshop ended with the adoption of a Roadmap by the Ghana stakeholders on the establishment of the Ghana Protection and Human Security Coordination Mechanism in the country with membership from all relevant stakeholders.

Closing, remarks delivered by the Network of Persons with Disabilities, OXFAM, WANEP and the Ghana Peace Council. The ECOWAS Commission also reiterated its commitment to support the Government and People of Ghana and all ECOWAS Member States in creating a region with full respect for human rights and guaranteeing human security. The representative of the ECOWAS National Unit in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Madam Neematu, declared the Workshop closed.

A number of additional outcomes of the workshop were identification on the need for the harmonization of standards as appropriate, coordination of efforts and oversight for system wide implementation of protection and human security related policies and plans, the need to conduct a National Baseline Situation Assessment and Analysis on the state of Protection and Human Security in Ghana and ensuring that protection and human protection interventions and services are made available in areas outside the national and district capitals and municipalities; amongst other agreed measures.

The Workshop was well attended and participants included ECOWAS Commission Staff, ECOWAS National Office, Ghana; Office of the ECOWAS Resident Representative in Ghana; National/ECOWAS Early Warning and Response Centre, Ministry of Information, Statistical Service, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Parliament, Ministry of Justice and Attorney Generals Department, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Interior (Refugee, trafficking, human security),NADMO, NACOC, Ghana Police Service, Ghana Chamber of Commerce, National Network of Civil Society Organisations , Ministry of Health, Ministry of National Security, Ministry of Education, Human Trafficking Secretariat, Ministry of Employment and Labour relations, Ghana Immigration Service, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Defence, Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), WANEP-GHANA, National Peace Council, Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), Ghana Education Service, Ghana Bar Association, Ghana Federation of the Disabled, National Youth Authority, Challenging Heights, CDD-Ghana, National Development Planning Commission, Centre for Socioeconomic Studies, Ghana Refugee Board. Partner Organizations in participation were UN Women, IOM, UNHCR, GIZ and ICMPD .

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