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WAI Director General participates in the 13th Meeting of ECOWAS Strategic Planning Coordinating Committee (SPCC), Abuja, 11-12 May 2018

Preceded by the preparatory working session of the Technical Sub-Committee of the Strategic Planning Coordinating Committee (SPCC), the 13th meeting of the SPCC, jointly organized by the ECOWAS Commission and the GIZ (Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit), was held at the Sandralia Hotel, Abuja, Federal Republic of Nigeria, May 11-12, 2018.

Abudja 1

The agenda of the meeting addressed the following main points:

-       To discuss preparatory activities for the development of a new Vision for ECOWAS

-       To discuss the prioritization tool of the ECOWAS program

-       To hold an interactive session with the new Vice President of the Commission

-       To present an overview of the programs and activities of the respective Institutions and Agencies as they relate to the implementation of the Community Strategic Framework (CSF), 2016 – 2020

The meeting was chaired by the Vice-President of the ECOWAS Commission, H.E Finda E.M Koroma, and facilitated by, Mrs. Ulrike Breitschuh, a GIZ Consultant.

The following ECOWAS Institutions and Specialized Agencies were represented at the meeting:

ECOWAS Commission

ECOWAS Parliament

Community Court of Justice

West African Health Organization (WAHO)

ECOWAS Gender Development Center (EGDC)

ECOWAS Youth Sport Development Center (EYSDC)

ECOWAS Regional Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERERA)

Regional Agriculture Agency Fund (RAAF)

Project Preparation Development Unit (PPDU)

West African Institute (WAI)

West African Monetary Institute (WAMI)

West African Monetary Agency (WAMA)

West African Gas Pipeline Company (WAGPCo)

West African Power Pool (WAPP)

The GIZ was represented by Mr. Franck-Emery Mongbé and Mrs. Katja Lehmann.

In her opening address, HE Finda EM Koroma, highlighted the importance of the meeting for the preparation of the document on the ECOWAS Vision 2020, which will focus on the strategies to be implemented to address development challenges in the ECOWAS zone and enable people to fully realize the political, economic and social benefits of ECOWAS integration agenda.

In conformity with the program of the meeting, the first working session was dedicated to the preparation of a roadmap for the development of the Post 2020 Vision document.

Three (3) proposals on the ECOWAS Vision Statement 2020 have been presented to the CCPS by the Technical Committee, including:

Proposition 1: By 2050, ECOWAS shall be a borderless, peaceful, secured and cohesive region that is politically stable with an enabling environment for sustainable development driven by its own people.

Proposition 2: Vision 2040: A prosperous, peaceful with highly integrated and inclusive economy driven by its people and incorporating wealth creation and sustainable development by 2040.

Proposition 3: Vision 2040: Positioning ECOWAS towards the creation of an economic union through fostering peace, regional cooperation to improve the living standards of its people.

The interactive session with the Vice-President of the ECOWAS Commission aimed to provide a platform to discuss ways to improve program management and coordination and to address the need to strengthen the synergy between finance, research and development. statistics, planning and monitoring and evaluation as well as the results-based management culture of the Community institutions.

Discussions focused on the required skills and competencies to meet the expectations of Member States and development partners, program approval processes, and insufficient human resources to implement programs.

The following Institutions and Specialized Agencies made presentations on the implementation of the 2016-2020 Community Strategic Framework (CSF): West African Health Organization (WAHO), ECOWAS Parliament, Community Court of Justice (CCJ), Center for Gender Development ECOWAS, ECOWAS Youth and Sport Development Center (EYSDC) and ECOWAS Commission.

The overall objective of the presentations was to provide an overview of the programs of ECOWAS Institutions and Specialized Agencies with regard to the implementation of the CSF and to discuss some of the main achievements and challenges in order to share the experiences between Institutions and Specialized Agencies.

The working session on the prioritization of ECOWAS Programs and Projects allowed after deliberation of the CCPS to fix five (5) criteria to be taken into account:

-       Alignment with the ECOWAS Vision

-       Needs and demand-driven i.e. Meets the needs and expectations of the people

-       Political will of Member States to implement

-       Promotion of gender equality and equity

-       Availability of funds and resources

The vote of thanks was given by the representatives of the West African Gas Pipeline Company and the West Africa Institute who both expressed their gratitude to the Vice-President for having, despite her busy agenda, chaired and actively participated in the 13th SPCC Meeting. They acknowledged all the participants for the quality of their respective contributions on the future of the region. Finally, they thanked the GIZ Consultant for the excellence of her service.

In her closing remarks, the Vice-President thanked the members of the CCPS and the Technical Subcommittee, the Technical Support Team and GIZ for their contribution to the success of the meeting. She expressed confidence that the process of developing the ECOWAS Vision 2020 will be successfully piloted by ECOWAS staff.

The ECOWAS Commission Vice-President met the ECOWAS Director General on Monday 14 May for an interview on the technical support that WAI could provide in the process of developing and implementing the post 2020 Vision. A series of exchanges also took place with Mr. Awudu Ahmed Gumah, Head, Planning, Research, Monitoring and Evaluation at the ECOWAS Gender Development Center and members of the Cabinet of the Vice President to determine the for intervention of the IAO in this important step for the future of ECOWAS.

WAI Director General thanked HE Finda E.M Koroma for the confidence placed in WAI and reiterated the full availability of the Institute to devote all its efforts to meeting the expectations of the Commission.

On 16 May, Prof. Djénéba Traoré met the ECOWAS Commissioners in charge of Science Education and Culture, Prof. Leopoldo Amado and Human Resources, Prof. Jeremias Dias Furtado.

With ECOWAS Commissioner Amado whose Department manages WAI’s dossier, the exchanges focused on the administrative and financial situation of the Institute, the state of the art of research on regional integration in West Africa and the challenges to be met for the successful achievement of the process. Commissioner Amado requested further information on the activities and results obtained from the IAO in order to have the necessary elements for the follow-up of the file.

WAI Director General also had a working session with Mr. Franck Afanyikossou, Head of Relations with other ECOWAS Institutions at the Office of the Vice President, about the international workshop, to be held in Berlin. 24 and 25 May 2018, to which Prof. Traoré had been invited on Germany's new policy for West Africa and ECOWAS priorities.

Finally, on the initiative of Mr. Afanyikossou, Mrs. Eucharia Onwuneme, officer at the ECOWAS Library, offered to Prof. Traoré severa documents on the different fields of intervention of ECOWAS.

Abudja

Started on May 10, 2018, WAI Director General's stay in Abuja ended on May 17th.

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