The ECOWAS Commission, in collaboration with the Organisation for Migration (IOM) and other partners, is organizing a high-level Consultation on the Implementation of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) in Abuja, Nigeria between October 12 and 14, this year.
The Consultation precedes the International Migration Review Forum to be held in 2022, which would discuss extensively the implementation Compact at the local, national, regional and global levels.
Adoption of the GCM in Marrakesh, Morocco in 2018 marked a major paradigm shift in the global governance framework and provided a common human rights-based framework for international migration, highlighting all its dimensions.
Strongly embedded in the 2030 Agenda, the GCM, with its guiding principles and 23 objectives offered a 360-degree approach and cross-cutting vision to migration, as well as presenting an opportunity to strengthen the human rights of migrants and recognize their positive contribution to sustainable development.
To ensure its effective implementation, Member States called on the Global Compact for the inclusion of a voluntary follow-up and review process.
With the support of the African Union Commission and the Regional UN Network on Migration for West and Central Africa, the two-day forum would create an opportunity for the ECOWAS Member States and other stakeholders to reflect collectively on initial results and to discuss ways in moving forward in the implementation of the GCM.
"The consultation aims to allow the ECOWAS Member States to ensure their common position will be well-considered at the global level," a release signed by Kampani Stylia, the Public Information Officer, IOM Nigeria and copied to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) indicated.
Among others, the objectives of the consultations are to provide a brief overview of the GCM review processes and the timeline towards the 2022 International Migration Review Forum and an opportunity for the ECOWAS Member States to take stock and review the recent developments, progress made and challenges on the implementation of the GCM in West Africa, the release said.
It stated the consultations would further provide a space for experience sharing, best practices exchange and stock-taking by the ECOWAS Member States during the implementation, follow-up and review of the GCM and assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the implementation of the GCM and the governance of international migration.
An opportunity would also be provided for the ECOWAS Member States to optimize their engagement with and contribution to the upcoming high-level International Migration Review Forum.
The Commission, however, explained migration in West Africa was mostly characterized by intra-regional movements.
"As free movement among ECOWAS member states is a vital component of regional integration, most migratory movements taking place within the ECOWAS region are linked to employment and labour mobility, including seasonal, temporary and permanent migrant workers."
"While migration in West Africa takes mostly place within the region, it encompasses a multi-faceted aspect, including economic migration to North Africa and Europe, irregular migration, forced displacements due to conflict, human rights violations, environmental change and natural disasters or climate-related migration," the release said.
"In order to provide a whole-of-society approach, it will include the participation of all stakeholders, including migrants themselves as well as the United Nations system, in recognition of the complex and multi-dimensional nature of migration".
"A whole-of-government, whole-of-society and whole-of-UN system approach will be a central tenet of this review process.
The Global Compact created the International Migration Review Forum to serve as the primary inter-governmental global platform for the Member States to discuss and share progress on the implementation of all aspects of the Global Compact, including as it relates to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and with the participation of all relevant stakeholders.