Friday, September 22

ECOCIG concludes  nationwide campaign on ECOWAS activities, Covid-19

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The awareness campaign 17-20 June took the team to strategic border towns of Jara Soma, Farafenni and Basse where they met various citizens from all the member states, community leaders and government representatives.

The Political Advisor to the ECOWAS Permanent Mission in the Gambia Claude Condor informed various communities and ECOWAS citizens of some of the activities of the mission in the country.

Key among them include the contribution of the technical support in the Security Sector Reform and the presence of the regional forces who are working closely with the Gambia Armed Forces to maintain peace and security.

The regional block members in Gambia frequently work with border post officers.

The permanent mission in partnership with UNDP provides assistance to flood victims in various regions.

Ambassador Claude said ECOWAS will provide 7 computers to all the 7 border posts to help collect data base on the inflow and outflow of people coming through and out of Gambia.

The President of ECOWAS Citizens in the Gambia Michel Pokpaye Kuivogui said his organization intends to establish offices in the various regions in the Gambia to serve as a link between ECOWAS citizens and the authorities.

He emphasised the need to take Covid-19 seriously while urging all to observe the health protective measures.

Meanwhile key objectives of the campaign also include means of mitigating the impacts of Covid-19 on ECOWAS citizens.

He said ECOCIG will embark on fund raising activities to raise funds.

Some of the funds raised will benefit members through assistance including providing farming equipment as well and a host of other benefits.

The Governors of Lower River Region, Upper River Region and Deputy Governor of North Bank Region all welcomed the gesture and praised ECOWAS and ECOCIG for the awareness campaign initiative.

The Governor of Upper River Region Samba Bah expressed delight for the campaign said his region is open to all law abiding non-Gambians.

He recognised the importance of ECOWAS citizens in URR while praising them for their contribution to the region adding that they respect the laws of the land.

The overriding problem according to the testimonies of the various ECOWAS citizens is the closure of borders among countries.

They highlighted the impacts of the closure of the Guinea border.

The citizens equally accused security officers along borders outside Gambia of extortion.

They complained about issues of citizenship saying many people born in The Gambia but lost their parents can neither obtain citizenship in the country of their parents nor are they offered citizenship in the Gambia.

It is generally believed among the ECOWAS citizens that very little is known about the activities of the regional block.

And the awareness campaign embarked by ECOCIG was therefore overwhelmingly welcomed by attendants.  

They claimed to be better informed about the activities of ECOWAS and are aware of what institution to run to should they have issues.