Fri, 24 May 2024

 

ECOWAS allocates $25m in 2024 to fight terrorism in Nigeria, others
 
By: Abara Blessing Oluchi
Fri, 19 Apr 2024   ||   Nigeria,
 

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) says it allocated 25 million dollars in 2024 to fight terrorism in Nigeria, Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso.

Prof. Fatou Sarr, ECOWAS Commissioner, Human Development and Social Affairs, disclosed this during a news conference at the commission’s headquarters, on Friday in Abuja.

Sarr said that four million dollars of the amount was dedicated to humanitarian action to curb the devastating consequences of terrorism, and mitigate the fallout of natural disasters in the sub-region.

She noted that humanitarian actions were critical because of the multiple crises and displacements within the community, adding that such actions never stop even where the target country is under sanctions.

“In 2024, ECOWAS has released 9 million dollars for internally displaced people, refugees, asylum seekers, as well as for the communities that welcome them (i.e all 15 countries).

“ECOWAS has allocated one million dollars for stabilization in Nigeria, that is, victims of terrorism, displaced people, injured people, rehabilitation and strengthening community resilience.

“Out of a fund of 25 million dollars intended for the fight against terrorism in Nigeria, Burkina, Mali and Niger, ECOWAS has reserved 4 million dollars for humanitarian actions,” she said.

The commissioner said that in 2023 alone, ECOWAS provided support of over 12. 6 million dollars to four million out of the 8.5 million victims of violent conflicts and disasters across West Africa.

She said that the Republic of Guinea, while under sanctions in January, received 600,000 dollars, of which 100,000 was allocated to fire disaster, and 499,390 dollars for floods in the country.

Sarr said the commission also carried out programmes for the development and promotion of young people within the subregion under three key intervention areas, namely, volunteerism, sports and economic integration.

“Since 2014, ECOWAS has posted 217 volunteers to the following countries: Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Nigeria, Burkina, Bénin.

“ECOWAS works to promote the spirit of volunteerism among young people to give them opportunity for professional development, enhance their civic engagement and foster conscience for community service,” she said.

Sarr identified sports as a crucial integration factor used by the ECOWAS to encourage the youths from all member countries and create in them a feeling oneness and belonging.

“ECOWAS also supports sports federations with 100,000 dollars each per year.

“In 2023, ECOWAS initiated cooperation with the Peoples Republic of China to support young people. Thus, 12 entrepreneurship projects for young people in the subregion received an award out of a total of 100 worldwide.

“For the ECOWAS Gender Centre, 1,720 excellence scholarships were distributed from 2010 to 2022 to young girls from disadvantaged families,” the commissioner said.

Sarr announced that an ECOWAS youth conference would hold from May 2024 to appraise the current situation, identify the changes and ruptures, which have led to some malaise in the subregion.

 

 

 

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