As part of the activities of the collaborative platform of ECOWAS institutions in the Republic of Mali, the ECOWAS Resident Representation in Mali organised a strategic retreat from 25 to 28 January 2023 at Domaine Kanu (Koulikoro Region). The objective of the retreat was to evaluate the actions of the platform of ECOWAS institutions and agencies for the year 2022, focusing on the context, challenges, opportunities and prospects.
The retreat brought together member institutions of the platform, namely the Directorate for African Integration (ECOWAS National Office), the ECOWAS Resident Representation in Mali, the Regional Animal Health Centre (RAHC, a specialised ECOWAS agency), and the National Early Warning and Response Mechanism Coordination Centre in Mali (CNAP).
The retreat was extended to civil society organisations working for or set up by ECOWAS, especially WANEP-Mali, the Women, Peace and Security Network, the West African Civil Society Forum (WACSOF), the Federation of African Communities in Mali (FECAM), the Coalition for Citizen Election Observation in Mali (COCEM) and the Pan-African Women’s Organisation (PAWO). Furthermore, some embassies of ECOWAS Member States in Mali, the African Union Mission for Mali and the Sahel (MISAHEL) and the European Union (EU) Embassy in Mali also took part in the event.
During the retreat, there were presentations on the ECOWAS Vision 2050, the 2022-2026 Strategic Plan, the prospects of the various member institutions of the platform, and especially the role of the early warning mechanism in the management and prevention of crises in the region.
At the end of the three-day retreat, the participants carried out an objective assessment by highlighting public perception of the role of ECOWAS and made recommendations. It is clear that the major efforts deployed by the organisation are not well known by the citizens and that it is urgent to work on a communication strategy adapted to current realities for greater ownership of ECOWAS by States and citizens of the Community.
The various stakeholders are committed to contributing effectively to the actualisation of an ECOWAS of the People that takes into account the aspirations of West African citizens.