Experts, CSOs validate ECPF Plans of action25 Jan, 2018
At the end of their two-Day validation Workshop on the 23rd of January 2018, the experts, working in conjunction with the Focal Persons of the 15 ECPF components, created a robust participatory process towards strengthening the regional peace and security architecture.
The Workshop’s broad aim included the enrichment of the conceived action plans and making them more responsive to the needs of Member States. The participants also worked at consolidating agreed variables while defining concrete roles for CSOs during the stated implementation period.
Featured at the Workshop were presentations and reviews of ECPF plans of action covering all the identified Components. There were further reviews of existing indicators, baseline targets and means of verification of activities to be embarked upon as well as plenary discussions of the salient elements of the working group conclusions regarding harmonization of the recommendations which spelt out the way forward.
Welcoming participants to the Workshop, the ECPF Secretariat led by ECOWAS Porgramme Officer, Conflict Prevention, Constant Gnacadja stressed the importance finalizing the action plans having entered its first implementation year. The Secretariat held that the engendered appraisal from the validation exercise will link identified activities to particular outputs and the region gains in the process because “It is cheaper to prevent conflict”
Corroborating his colleague, the Manager, ECOWAS Peace Fund Mr Dieudonne Nikiema gave a rundown of the programmes, stating that the relevance of sessions on the agenda justifies the gathering. He urged participants to come up with a working document in the end.
Similarly, Head, Mediation, Facilitation Division, of the Department of Political Affairs Peace and Security (PAPS) Mr. Ebenezer Asiedu who stood in for the ECOWAS Director, Political Affairs, noted that despite the existence of numerous plans of action within the ECOWAS set up, there became a need to especially develop those of the ECPF which are expected to be an inclusive process.
Stemming from the meeting of the Focal persons in October 2015, the continuous improvement of the ECPF working document culminated in the validation meeting with further inputs to improve on the work done so far.
The Workshop also provided an atmosphere for increased understanding as priority areas of intervention were mapped out in order to foster synergies and beneficial collaboration as participants examined policy coherence with a view to identifying also, the Components that are enablers of others.
The fifteen components of the ECPF are: Early Warning, Preventive Diplomacy, Democracy and Political Governance, Human Rights and the Rule of Law, Media, Natural Resource Governance, Cross-Border Initiatives, Security Governance, Practical Disarmament, Women, Peace and Security, Youth Empowerment, ECOWAS Standby Force, Humanitarian Assistance, Peace Education as well as Enabling Mechanism.