Project News

The project “Organised Crime: West African Response to Trafficking in Persons” supports a meeting of the ECOWAS National Anti-Trafficking Focal Points

07 February 2022

From 1-3 February, the ECOWAS Commission held the 14th Annual Review Meeting of the Regional Network of National Focal Institutions against Trafficking in Persons Plus (RNNI-TIP+) in Niamey, Niger. Building upon the existing successful cooperation, the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) supported the organisation of the meeting in the framework of the project “Organised Crime West Africa Response to Trafficking (OCWAR-T), funded by the European Union and the German government. Furthermore, the ICMPD-implemented a project on strengthening the cooperation between Niger and Nigeria, funded by the Kingdom of the Netherlands, complemented these joint efforts.

During the three-days meeting, 70 participants - National TIP Focal Points to 13 ECOWAS Member States and Mauritania and other governmental stakeholders, NGO representatives (national coordinators of West-Africa Network for Protection of Children, International Social Services West Africa) and ICMPD presented, discussed and reflected on the achievements and challenges in the Member States’ anti-trafficking responses identified in 2021 as well as on the prospects for 2022.

ICMPD presented four major products of the OCWAR-T project:

1. The evidence-based Baseline Assessment of National, Regional and International Cooperation Mechanisms for the Protection of Trafficked People, and Related Frameworks on Crimes against the Person ECOWAS MS and Mauritania.

2. The Baseline Study on the Regional Crime against the Person Prevention Policy: Mixed vulnerabilities and protection from crimes against persons in ECOWAS countries and Mauritania - Overview of state responses to trafficking in persons and gender-based violence in Nigeria, Togo, the Gambia, and Senegal.

3. The preparations and planned actions towards the development of Regional Referral Mechanism for victims of trafficking in ECOWAS region and Mauritania.

4. The six country proposals approved under the Demand Driven Facility, to be implemented in 2022.

These discussions happened to the background of the ongoing Integrated Human Security In-country High Level Advocacy, Coordination and Capacity Building workshops steered by the ECOWAS Commission. Finally, the meeting also enabled the presentation of various ongoing initiatives aiming at strengthening national referral mechanisms and bilateral cooperation to combat trafficking in persons.