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ECOWAS and UN Security Council Team Pledge Greater collaboration on Human Security and Development
H.E. Edward Singhatey, Vice President, ECOWAS Commission (middle); Mr. Matthew Rycroft, Head of Delegation, UN Security Council (left), and Mrs. Halima Ahmed, ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security (right) during UN Security Council-ECOWAS meeting in Abuja, 6th March 2017.

Abuja, March 6 2017. Members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) team and the ECOWAS Commission are to work closely towards the enhancement of human security and development in the region.

Both parties met at the ECOWAS Commission on the 6th of March 2017 as part of the UNSC Mission to the countries of the Lake Chad Basin constituted by Nigeria, Chad, Niger and Cameroon.

At the meeting with officials of the ECOWAS Commission led by its Vice President Mr. Edward Singhatey, discussions centered on the identified issues surrounding the humanitarian situation in West Africa and its neighbours-the sahel and parts of Central Africa. The issues over which questions were also fielded included the root causes of conflicts, women’s participation in peacebuilding efforts, disarmament, demobilisation, reintegration and deradicalisation

Vice President Singhatey who was flanked by the ECOWAS Commissioners for Political Affairs Peace and Security (PAPS) as well as General Administration and Conference Mrs. Halima Ahmed Mr. Stephen Nartey respectively, briefed the UN team on efforts of the Commission aimed at tackling security and humanitarian problems in the region. He drew attention to the flashpoints of the region as well as countries needing both institutional and electoral reforms.

He enthused further that deliberations would ensure that problems such as poverty alleviation and the prevention of youth from falling victims of radicalization are tackled jointly.

Stating that the problem of Lake Chad extends beyond Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon and Niger, Vice President Singhatey said ECOWAS has cordial relations with all the UN agencies and only need to extend that to the UNSC. He expressed the hope that the current joint effort would produce a strategy that will resolve the security situation and redirect the negative pro- conflict perception of the region. He also touched on the drug issue in the Sahel which is being compounded by threats from terror groups.

Cross section of UN Security Council Delegation during UN Security Council-ECOWAS meeting in Abuja, 6th March 2017.

Commissioner Ahmed said efforts have been intensified towards the realization of the UNSC Resolution 1325 on women, peace and security by engaging available instruments to help the cause of women. She affirmed the vital role of women in the prevention and resolution of conflicts, peacebuilding, and deradicalisation efforts.

The team received updated information from the ECOWAS officials underscoring the critical importance of a holistic approach to address the embedded drivers of the conflict and to prevent and counter terrorism as well as violent extremism


Head of the UNSC 20-man delegation Mr. Matthew Rycroft expressed his delight with the ECOWAS intervention and resolution of the Gambian political conflict arising from the country’s presidential election

He restated that cooperation by the UNSC with regional organisations attests to the fact that ‘we stand with the countries in the region fight against terrosism, humanitarian issues as well as the impending famine’ while looking forward to long term solutions to the identified problems.

The Secretary General of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) Ambassador Ahmed Allam-Mi among others, stressed the need to adopt a common strategy in the collective fight against terrorism.

“We have discussed the situation in the Lake Chad basin. We will mobilise to support the member states facing Boko Haram threat. We have come up with a strategy that covers military, ideological, humanitarian and political. He added.

L-R: Ambassador Ahmad Allam-Mi, ECCAS Secretary General; Mr. Fode Seck; Mr. Matthew Rycroft, Head of Delegation, UN Security Council; H.E. Edward Singhatey, Vice President, ECOWAS Commission; Mrs. Halima Ahmed, ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security; Mr. Ayassor Tchambakou, Commissioner for Agriculture, Environment and Water Resources and Mr. Stephen Nartey, Commissioner for General Administration and Conference during UN Security Council-ECOWAS meeting in Abuja, 6th March 2017.

Mr. Rycroft’s delegation had two co-chairs- Messrs Alexis Lamek (France) and Fode Seck (Senegal).

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