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Nanette Thomas in Kampala, Uganda

17 May 2017 at 04:06 | 2482 views

By Bockarie Kukuku Musa.

The Minister of Political and Public Affairs, Hon. Nanette Thomas and the Head of Mission, International Organization for Migration (IOM), Mr. Sanusi Savage are in Kampala, Uganda to attend the 3rd PAN-AFRICAN FORUM ON MIGRATION (PAFoM III) on the Theme: “Towards an African Common Position on the Global Compact on Migration” 15 – 17 May 2017; Kampala - Uganda.

The Third Pan African Forum on Migration (PAFoM) started Tuesday in Kampala and ends on the 17 May, 2017 under the theme; “Towards an African Common Position on the Global Compact on Migration”.

This PAFoM is designed to complement the upcoming regional consultations towards development of the Global Compact on Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) and is intended to be an open and all-inclusive platform for dialogue. It is expected to bring together national and regional perspectives and effective practices of all relevant stakeholders including Senior Government Officials from relevant ministries responsible for foreign affairs, development, justice, home affairs, immigration, humanitarian response, labor and social affairs, climate change from AU member states for a whole of government approach.

The Forum will also provide a platform for Regional Consultations which will take place as part of the preparatory process of the GCM; bringing together regional/sub-regional (RECs) bodies and institutions, UN Agencies and International Organizations and other entities including CSOs, private sector, employers’ organizations, migrants, diaspora, academia, trade unions, and non-state actors for a comprehensive whole of Society approach to migration governance and the global compact on migration.

The modalities for drafting the GCM, agreed upon through a modalities resolution, involved a series of intergovernmental negotiations. The GCM is intended to set out a range of principles, commitments and understandings among Member States regarding international migration and all of its dimensions. The Global Compact is expected to make an important contribution to global governance and enhance coordination on international migration as it would present a framework for comprehensive international cooperation on migrants and human mobility in addition to dealing with all aspects of international migration, including the humanitarian, developmental, employment, human rights-related and other aspects of migration.

The modalities resolution envisages that the RECs and sub-regional bodies, together with other entities in the UN system, and in particular IOM, will organize discussions among member states and other relevant stakeholders on regional and sub-regional dimensions to provide national and regional perspectives and inputs to the GCM negotiations.

Expected Outputs / Outcomes

It is expected that the Forum will inter-alia result in the following outcomes:

- Increased knowledge, better understanding and appreciation of the Global Compact on Migration and its modalities;

- Better understanding of the principles and commitments for the human rights of migrants;

- Draft Continental Free Movement of Persons Protocol reviewed with additional inputs for finalization;

- Senior Officials of member states and RECs encouraged to take the necessary steps to ratify protocols on free movement of persons and to facilitate the implementation of continent-wide visa free regimes;

- Member states sensitized on the benefits of migration with a view to forestalling any resentment to foreigners from other African countries and preventing xenophobia;

- Policy makers inspired to facilitate orderly, safe, regular migration and human mobility including through the implementation of planned well-managed migration policies;

- Participants acknowledge that besides facilitating regional and continental integration, the benefits of free movement of people, goods and services, far outweigh the real and potential security and economic challenges that may be perceived or generated;

- A Draft Outcome Document towards African Common Position with Policy Recommendations for consideration and adoption at the 28th Ordinary Session of the African Union in January, 2018; as Africa’s inputs to the negotiations on the Global Compact on Migration.

It is the third of the Intra-Regional Consultations on Migration in Africa. This Forum is co-organized by the African Union, government of Uganda, IGAD and IOM in collaboration with the UNECA with ILO, ECOWAS, EAC and SADC as Co-sponsors.

About one hundred and fifty (150) Senior Officials and experts will be drawn from ministries and institutions responsible for Immigration, Trade, Labour, Foreign Affairs & Regional Integration, National Security, National Planning & Development, Gender and Youth and Disaster management. Senior Officials will also participate from each of the Secretariats of the eight Regional Economic Communities (RECs) notably; CEN-SAD, COMESA, EAC, ECCAS, ECOWAS, IGAD, SADC and UMA. Participants will also include Officials and Experts from UN Agencies and International Organizations including; UNECA, UNHCR, UNDP, AfDB, World Bank, ILO, OHCHR, Development partners and Co-sponsors. Resource persons and experts from the academia, civil society, private sector, Consular Officers, Parliamentarians, Diaspora, Traditional Leaders, Migrants, Workers and employers’ Organizations, among others, will also attend.

The delegation from Sierra Leone will be sharing their experience on improving migration management in Africa (Sierra Leone) through the implementation of the Migration Policy Framework for Africa and the African Common Position on Migration and Development, in accordance with the AU Decisions.*

During the second day of the conference,*the Minister of Political and Public Affairs, Hon. Nanette Thomas will be moderating the session on youth and irregular migration- the role of traditional leaders and civil society (human right, trafficking in human beings, social inclusion, discrimination, xenophobia and intolerance).