ECOWAS Sensitises Immigration Officers and Trans-Border Commercial Drivers on the Biometric ID Card in The Gambia22 Sep, 2023
The ECOWAS Commission through the Directorate of Free Movement of Persons & Migration launched advocacy and sensitisation campaigns in Member States targeted at Community Citizens as well as Border Officials on the use and benefits of the ECOWAS National Biometric Identity Card (ENBIC) and other relevant texts. The sensitisation and advocacy were undertaken in Banjul, The Gambia from September 20 to 21, 2023.
The regional campaign is aimed at raising awareness among ECOWAS Community Citizens, Stakeholders and Non-State actors in the target locations to enhance their understanding of free movement and migration within ECOWAS region as well as identifying the benefits and opportunities of the ECOWAS integration agenda.
During the sensitisation for The Gambian Immigration Service on September 20, 2023, in Banjul, Mr. Albert SIAW-BOATENG, the Directorate of Free Movement of Persons & Migration, whose welcome statement was read by Mr. Obinna AJUGWO from the Border Management and Migration Division, highlighted that laudable strides have been recorded since the adoption of the ENBIC and commended the Gambian Authorities for the advancements made in deployment and implementation of the ENBIC.
Mr. SIAW-BOATENG added that through concerted efforts by Member States the Commission is optimistic that the ECOWAS National Biometric Identity Card will achieve its objectives.
In his opening statement, Mr. Musa Sawaneh, from the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment of The Gambia emphasised that the Biometric ID card will help to facilitate intra-regional travel, trade, and commerce by making it easier for West African citizens to move across borders, reducing border closure delays, and improving border security.
The second day of the advocacy and sensitisation campaign, Thursday, 21 September 2023 took place at the Abuko International Park in Banjul where Trans-border commercial drivers from ECOWAS Member States were sensitised on the Biometric ID card, its benefits and how to acquire it.
The Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government within the context of facilitating intra-regional mobility in a safe, secure, and orderly manner, adopted the machine-readable ECOWAS National Biometric Identity Card (ENBIC) in 2014 as an official travel document to replace the hand-written ECOWAS Travel Certificate.