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ECOWAS humanitarian efforts directly impact security in the region
L-R Honorable Minister State Budget & National Planning, Representing the Acting President, Hajiya Zainab Shamsuwa Ahmed, ECOWAS Vice President, Mr. Edward D. Singhatey, Mrs. Fatimata

Abuja, 21st June 2017.

“The success of our efforts in addressing humanitarian concerns as a region have an important and direct impact on the overall human security outcomes of the region” said the Vice President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr. Edward Singhatey, at the margin of a week-long celebration in Abuja to mark the 2017 World Refugee Day.

Elaborating his statement at the jointly organized event by the ECOWAS Commission, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) and the National Commission for Refugee Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI), Mr. Singhatey linked ECOWAS progressive endeavours in humanitarian sphere to among others, instruments such as the ECOWAS Humanitarian Policy, Humanitarian Response Mechanism as well as the Model for the establishment of National Disaster Management Agencies by Member States to enhance disaster management and response.

Mr. Singhatey also informed participants including refugees residing in Abuja and its environs that ECOWAS is establishing a Humanitarian Depot in the Republic of Mali and will also work closely with partners to ensure effective humanitarian preparedness and response during emergencies.

Cross Section of the entire participants

Despite severe budgetary constraints, Mr. Singhatey reiterated the ECOWAS Commission’s commitment to continue to support compatriots as resources permit.

In a brief remark, the ECOWAS Commissioner for Social Affairs and Gender, Dr. Fatimata Dia Sow, urged stakeholders to join hands with ECOWAS “in rendering a safe and dignified existence for all our peoples, especially vulnerable groups of concern”.

The ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs Peace & Security, Mrs. Halima Ahmed expressed solidarity with the refugees and then urged participants to be empathic with the Persons-of-Concern (PoCs).

Speaking on behalf of the concerned 78 families spread across Abuja and its environs, one of the refugees, Mrs. Germaine Ukumu expressed gratitude to partners especially the Nigerian Government for “tolerating the surging number of refugees in the country”.  She also urged partners to provide “more support as many refugees are facing grave challenges of shelter, food, education, security, employment and human dignity”.


Director of Humanitarians & Social Affairs, ECOWAS Commission, Mrs. Florence Iheme and its Staff of the Department

The ECOWAS Commission’s Director of Humanitarian Affairs, Mrs. Florence Iheme, on behalf of the organizers, presented prize cups each to the winner, first runner-up and most valuable player of the novelty football match played in Abuja on Saturday, 17th June, 2017 between PoCs and humanitarian bodies.


The NCFRMI and UNHCR were represented by the National Commissioner for Refugee Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons, Hajia Sa’diya Umar Farouq and the UNHCR Country Representative, Mr. Antonio Jose Canhandula.

Director of Humanitarians & Social Affairs, ECOWAS Commission, Mrs. Florence Iheme, Present the Cup, Novelty Football Match between PoCs & Humanitarian Bodies

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