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Speaker Cisse Lo receives Prix De la Foundation Excellence Award The Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament Moustapha Cisso Lo has been honoured with an Excellence Award by the Prix de la Foundation in Dahkla, Morroco, a prize for his sustained efforts towards integration. This Prize, a high-profile honour, is presented every year to some exceptional personalities, working tirelessly for a more Humane World. Cisse Lo received the prize on the side-lines of the occasion of the Crans Montana Forum on Africa and South-South Cooperation. Other recipients of the award included Mrs. Debbie Remengesau, First Lady of the Republic of Palau and Mr. Michel Martelly, Former President of the Republic of Haiti. The award ceremony was attended by numerous international personalities and chaired by Amb. Jean-Paul Carteron, Honorary Chairman and Founder of the Crans Montana Forum and held within the framework of the Crans Montana Forum on Africa and South-South Cooperation in Dakhla.

Speaker Cisse Lo receives Prix de la Foundation Prize………………………………………………………………………………...1 Morocco’s trade with 15 ECOWAS nations hit $1bn………….2 ECOWAS Parliament to wade into post-conflict reintegration in Nigeria…………………………………………………………………..3 Nyofelleh Garden: One of Gambia’s women cooperative farming experiment………………………………………………………….4 UNCHR applauds Parliament on security matters……………..6 Free movement: Speaker Cisse Lo embarks on assessment visit to Senegal/Gambia border………………………………………..7 The Holy Pool For Fertility; Crocodiles Pond of Kachikally ...9 Pictorials…………………………………………………………………………10 Pictorials………………………………………………………………………...13 Amb. Jean-Paul Carteron & Rev. Jesse Jackson presenting Prix de la Foundation Prize to Speaker Cisse Lo.

Morocco’s trade with 15 ECOWAS nations hit $1bn Morocco has said its trade with the ECOWAS region hit one billion dollars in 2016 and reinforced its request to join the region. President of the Moroccan House of Representatives, Mr Habib El Malik said this when he hosted delegation of ECOWAS parliamentarians led by the Speaker of the parliament at an inaugural session on regional integration in Rabat, Morocco on Thursday. The session was tagged “Towards a better movement of persons and goods among African countries: What mechanisms?” Malik emphasized that Morocco was committed to the promotion of regional and continental integration and trade. “ECOWAS and Morocco have strong relations; volume of trade between both parties was one billion dollars in 2016 which represents more than 37.3 per cent of increase compared to 10 per cent of trade in 1996.” “Morocco is ECOWAS’ first economic partner and we are working on partnerships to enhance trade and promote South-South cooperation.” Malik further said there was the need for countries to put in place appropriate framework to address challenges posed by migration and integrate migrant populations to reduce security risks.

“We have stabilized the situation of 25,000 migrants and this is part of proactive efforts to stand with other African countries; we also have about 25,000 students studying in different institutions in Morocco. Cont on pg 8……..


ECOWAS Parliament to wade into post-conflict reintegration in Nigeria. The Parliament has begun considerations of the reintegration strategies in post-conflict North-East Nigeria. The strategies formed part of the presentation by the Director General of the National Emergency Management in Nigeria (NEMA, Engr.

Mustapha Yunusa to the Delocalized JointCommittee of the ECOWAS Parliament which held in Senegal in April, 2018. Source:

Top on the agenda where the major challenges facing internally displaced refugees especially women and children as well as their recovery of their communities. While briefing the Parliament, Yunusa said: “Providing jobs to IDPs/Refugees is not enough to stabilize reintegration process in conflict affected societies. It requires a much

wider array of policies to create an enabling environment for employment”. “Rehabilitation of women and child victims of security crisis without follow-up services, so as to ascertain their strengths and weaknesses, renders the programme meaningless. Reintegration is a longer-term social and economic process with an open time frame designed to facilitate the assimilation of women and child victims of security crisis,” he said. It is on this basis that he called for more cooperation between ECOWAS Parliament and NEMA with regards to issues of IDPs and also called for a memorandum of understanding between the two parties. NEMA agreed to sustain its participation in ECOWAS activities and programmes . Giving an insight earlier, he said that within February 21 to 27, a total of 6749 arrivals and 3441 departures were recorded at locations in Askira/Uba, Bama, Chibok, Damboa, Demsa, Dikwa, Fufore, Girei, Gombi, Gubio, Guzamala, Gwoza, Hawul, Hong, Jere, Kaga, Kala/Balge, Konduga, Kukawa, Madagali, Mafa, Magumeri, Maiha, Michika, Mobbar, Manguno, Mubi-South, Ngala, Nganzai, Numa, Yola-North and Yola South Local Government Areas in Borno and Adamawa States.

Nyofelleh Garden: One of Gambia’s women cooperative farming experiment The Nyofelleh Garden is a vegetable farm located in the Nyofelleh Village, a one-hour drive away from the capital of the Gambia, Banjul. The Garden which is currently farmed by 270 local women in a cooperative arrangement, employs solar-powered flash irrigation method with installed over-head tank that has the capacity to store up to 40 M3of water for irrigating the cash crops, farmed mainly for export targeted at the European markets. Though still at the pilot stage, it is envisaged that the irrigation process will augment the 3-month rainfall season, ensuring about 3 cycles of harvest per annum. On the sidelines of the delocalized meeting of the Joint Committee on Agriculture, Environment, Water Resources and Rural Development/ Infrastructure and Industrial Development /Education, Science and Technology, which held in Banjul, the Gambia, Members were led by the Speaker, Moustapha Cisse Lo, on a site tour of the Garden, to ascertain the type of technology deployed therein, its economic veracity in terms of anticipated revenues as well as job creation capability, with a view to proposing to the Authority of Heads of State and Government, its replication across the sub-region. At present, the Nyofelleh Garden, a World Bank funded project under the supervision of Gambia’s Ministry of Agriculture, is focused on farming mainly vegetables though plans are in place to diversify, in liaison with the organized private sector. Nonetheless, the farming experiment is not without some challenges, some of which include the provisions of the Land Use Laws which negatively impact more women as well as lack of investments to boost expansion and diversification.

UNHCR applauds ECOWAS Parliament on security matters The ECOWAS Parliament had been commended for the depth of interest it has shown in matters of security crisis and human rights in West Africa. The UNHCR’s Regional Representative for West Africa and Regional Refugee Coordinator for the Nigerian Situation, Ms Liz Kpam Ahua gave the commendation at its jointcommittee meeting which held in Dakar from 11 to 15 April, 2018. She noted that the interest shown by the Parliament on human rights is an indication that policy makers, in this regard, the regional representatives, are willing to open discussions and raise awareness on this prevailing issue in the West African region. The Regional Coordinator stressed the need for more emphasis to be placed on the observed drawbacks in the implementation of human rights initiatives. “Such stumbling blocks include limited awareness on the availability of a unified travel documents for citizens of the West African Region, limited awareness on the established initiative aiding Right of Residence and Establishment, and either selective implementation, non-implementation or deliberate violation of the Articles of the Protocols”, she stated. Ms. Ahua enjoined Members of Parliament to throw their support behind the Protocols by giving priority to these issues as well as ensure full implementation of measures so that they can be rolled out across the region tangibly and beneficially, impacting citizens of West Africa. She further reiterated that the UNCHR remains committed to the realization of its commitments to displaced population and continues to pledge its support and effort to protect the rights of the citizens of West Africa, ensure proper translation and application of all relevant national, international and regional humanitarian laws, particularly asylum seekers, refugees, returnees, IDPs and stateless persons. Such stumble blocks include limited awareness on the availability of a unified travel documents for citizens of the West African Region, limited awareness on the established initiative aiding right to residence and establishment and either selective implementation, nonimplementation or deliberate violation of the articles of the protocols”, Ms Liz Kpam Ahua

Free movement: Speaker Cisse Lo embarks on assessment visit to Senegal/ Gambia border In keeping with the pledge of the ECOWAS Parliament to ensure compliance with the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons, Goods and Services, the Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, H.E. Moustapha Cisse Lo led other Members of Parliament on a tour of the Gambian border with Senegal.

The border tour, a fact-finding mission, was aimed at examining the level of compliance with the said ECOWAS Protocol. The Speaker said the fact-finding mission was sequel to complaints by some citizens of ECOWAS Members States of continued inhibition of free movement of people and goods along the borders of Member States.

Speaker Cisse Lo with the border officials

He noted that the mission was also an opportunity to enlighten the border officials of the fundamentals of the Protocol, recalling that in May 1979, ECOWAS Member States adopted the first Protocol relating to the Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Establishment. The Protocol stipulated the rights of ECOWAS citizens to enter, reside and establish economic activities in the territory of other Member States and offered a three-phase roadmap of five years each to achieve freedom of movement of persons after fifteen years. The speaker explained that “the first phase concerned the Right of Visa-free Entry whereas the second phase dealt with the Right of Residency, and phase three concerns the Right of Establishment in another Member State”. The first and second phases of the Free Movement Roadmap are fully implemented. The second phase ensured that citizens could obtain an ECOWAS residence card or permit in any Member State where-in they wish to reside. The third phase, the Right of Establishment, is being currently implemented in most Member States. It will be recalled that in the bid to facilitate the effective implementation of the Protocol on Free Movement, Heads of State and Government approved the establishment by Member States of a common ECOWAS Passport, formally known as the ECOWAS travel certificate. Cont on pg 8……..

Cont from pg 2…..

Cont from pg 7……..

The ECOWAS Passport was introduced in De“These show that we are committed to the procember 2000 to exempt holders from intramotion of regional integration and Morocco regional visa requirements and to function joining the ECOWAS will be of mutual benefit as an international travel document. Memand open up huge prospects in ECOWAS.” ber States are currently in the process of imHe added that Morocco being part of the ECO- plementing a joint visa basket that cover the WAS region would place the region as the whole sub-region, for non-ECOWAS citizens, 16th economically prosperous bloc globally tagged the Eco-Visa. and further make it possible to access foreign markets. ECOWAS has also implemented measures to In her address, Morocco’s Secretary of State to ease the movement of persons transported the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Interna- in private and commercial vehicles by hartional Cooperation, Mrs Mounia Boucetta said monizing policies that enable vehicles to enMorocco’s admittance to ECOWAS would al- ter and temporary reside in a Member State so promote opportunities for youth develop- for up to ninety and fifteen days respectively. ment. “Free movement hinges on participation of all Most ECOWAS Member States have, in this and we will look toward the well-being of all regards, implement the instituted ECOWAS Africa.” brown card, which is an insurance for motor Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament Mr vehicles , which ensures coverage of civil reMoustapha Cissé Lo recalled measures put in sponsibly for vehicle owners within the ECOplace by the regional bloc to promote free WAS sub-region. movement of goods and persons. The Holy Pool For Fertility; Crocodiles Pond of Kachikally Cissé Lo also reiterated the parliament’s support to admit Morocco as part of ECOWAS. Tucked away from The Gambia’s Capital, “Morocco’s application to join ECOWAS is to Banjul, the Kachikally Museum and Crocobe encouraged; Morocco is a platform for dile Pond in Bakau, is a major attraction communicating exchanges for overcoming for tourists. challenges in the region.” Kachikally is a privately owned shrine be-

The session ended with a declaration by participants to strengthen competitiveness of all member states, encourage economic integration promote peace and enhance cooperation. The participants also reaffirmed their commitment to implement the agreement on the African Continental Free Trade Area recently signed in Kigali by more than 40 African countries.

longing to the Bojang family of Bakau, one of the founding families and major land owners of the city. Name d after the central district of Bakau town, (other districts are Sanchaba and New Town), the Kachikally Museum houses diverse cultural artefacts from parts of the Gambia and beyond and has existed since the 17th century.

Its background never ceases to amaze many a tourist, especially those from the Western

World. However, hidden behind the scenes of the building housing the Museum lies another surreal attraction: the holy crocodile pool. The pool is reported to be home to between 70 and 100 ‘friendly’ crocodiles. Additional reports include the occasional sighting of the albino crocodiles, a tale that adds to the uniqueness of the tourist site. Interestingly, one of the most famous crocodiles was named ‘Charlie’, who unlike most other crocodiles, was allowed to roam freely, and can be approached and touched by visitors. The handlers of the site narrated how crocodiles found in the wild are sometimes brought to and reared at the holy pool. However, sighting of ‘friendly’ crocs is not the only attraction drawing hordes of tourists to the pool. Tales abound , particularly from amongst the locals, of cases of infertility suffered by women who had challenges with conception becoming a thing of the past after a dip in the pool or a bath (at a designated bath area within the premises) with water drawn from the crocodile pool. These seemingly mythical powers associated with the

‘Holy Pool’ are believed by most locals who consider the pool as a spiritual ground that derives its healing potency from the presence of deities worshipped there since centuries past. Local women who are without children usually come to the pool to take the ritual baths with the belief that they will become fertile and bear children afterwards. Because they believe, it seems to work for them.


A cross section of MPs, during the April 12-15, 2018 Forum in Dakar

Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Kingdom of Morocco (L) and a guest, during the April 2018 forum on free movement of persons and goods, held in Dakar, Senegal

President of the Republic of Liberia, George Weah(R) & Speaker Cisse Lo (L), During the 12-15 Feb, 2018 Forum on Free Movement of Goods & Persons held in Dakar, Senegal

Senegalese Citizens Match in Support of ECOWAS Sensitization, on Free Movement of Persons & Goods

Speaker Cisse Lo(Mid), in a chat with some Dignitaries, During the Forum on Free Movement of Persons & Goods held in Dakar, Senegal from 12-15 April 2018

Speaker Cisse Lo, being accompanied by Senegalese

A group photograph of MPs during a forum held in Dakar, Senegal

Mps Chairing the forum on Free Movement of Persons and Goods held in Dakar, Senegal

Some members of ECOWAS Female Parliamentarians and their male counterpart.

Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament, H.E. Moustapha Cisse Lo(L) & the President of the National Assembly of Republic of Senegal H.E. Moustapha Niasse, during the Ecoparl forum of Free Movement in Dakar

A band Procession in honour of ECOWAS Members of Parliament during a Delocalized Meeting in Banjul, The Gambia

A cross section of MPs during a Delocalized Meeting in Banjul, The Gambia, held from 15-20 April, 2018

A group photograph of MPs and some dignitaries during the April 2018 Delocalized Meeting held in Banjul, The Gambia

H.E. Moustapha Cisse Lo(L) & the Speaker of the National Assembly of The Gambia

Speaker Cisse Lo(Mid), flanked by the Minister of Trade, Industry & emplyment... (L) & Speaker of the National Assembly of The Gambia(R)

Speaker Cisse Lo, leads some MPs on inspection of the Women's Farm in Nyofelleh Village, outside Banjul, The Gambia

Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament in a tete-a-tete with Sen. Foster Ogola and a Moroccan MP

Cross section of MPS at the extra ordinary session in Dakar

Members of Parliament felicitating with Speaker

Speaker on a facility tour in Nyofellah Village

Former Member of the ECOWAS Parliament and President of Liberia, H. E George Weah & Speaker Cisse Lo

MPs participating in the walk on ECOWAS Sensitization, on Free Movement of Persons & Goods in Dakar

Speaker Cisse Lo and members from the Moroccan Foreign Affairs

Women farmers in Nyofelleh Village converging to welcome MPs


Publisher: Moustapha Cisse Lo (Hon. Speaker) Editor in Chief: John Azumah (Secretary General) Editor: Uchenna Duru (Ag. Chief Communication Officer) CONTRIBUTORS/AD HOC STAFF

Ifeanyi Nwoko: Contributing sub editor Phillip Nyam: Contributing sub editor Ifeanyi Adewale Valentine: Writer Maimuna Mohammed: Writer Adedeji Mapaderun: Graphics Kelvin Nwachukwu: Social Media Posts/Graphics

Augusta Anazodo : Administration Zainab Musa Ogsji: Administartion Facebook Studio: Photography

PUBLISHED BY THE DIVISION OF COMMUNICATION, ECOWAS Parliament. Herbert Macaulay Way, Garki, Abuja, Nigeria. www.facebook/ecowasparliament Twitter: @ECOWASParliamnt Youtube: ECOPARLTV


Official publication of the ECOWAS Parliament's Delocalized Meeting Edition for May, 2018.


Official publication of the ECOWAS Parliament's Delocalized Meeting Edition for May, 2018.