Monday, Nov 23, 2020


25 March 2019, KAMPALA (Uganda): The Minister of Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees of Uganda, Hon. Hilary Onek, this morning opened the “Regional Thematic Meeting on Livelihoods and Self-reliance for Refugees, Returnees and Host Communities” in Kampala organised by the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in collaboration with the Government of Uganda.

Minister of State of Youth and Children Affairs of Uganda - Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi, was in attendance at the high table along with the Director of Health & Social Division at IGAD - Ms Fathia Alwan, as well as representatives from the European Union, the UNHCR, and the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

The three-day gathering is a meeting of Experts to pave the way for a ministerial level meeting due to take place on Thursday 28 March at Speke Resort Munyunyo in Kampala.

The regional thematic meeting is bringing together IGAD Member States, development and humanitarian partners, as well as the private sector and the civil society groups from the humanitarian and development spheres to support these commitments.

Participants are drawn from IGAD Member States’ line ministries, including lead agencies that handle refugee matters; ministries of finance (treasury); ministries of planning and those responsible for local government (devolution, federalism or decentralization), as well as ministries of agriculture, livestock development and those responsible for labour.

Representatives of refugee and host communities, international finance institutions, partners engaged in securing durable solutions and the IGAD core group of partners to the Nairobi Plan of Action will are expected. Others include the private sector, civil society and the Diaspora who are champions for refugees.

The meeting is looking at a range of issues connected to the access of refugees and host communities to livelihood and economic opportunities including challenges accessing supporting services and functions (e.g. financial, information, training, infrastructure, business development services, etc.); as well as barriers in the regulatory and policy environment preventing refugees and host communities to fully take advantage of available opportunities.

In his inaugural speech, Hon. Onek said his belief that this forum was critical to “further explore mechanisms of promoting economic inclusion of refugees, returnees and host communities in the IGAD region”. He also noted that his country was “delighted to share good practices, lessons learnt and opportunities on the creation of jobs and livelihoods”.

In her opening remarks, the Director of Health & Social Division at IGAD-Ms Fathia Alwan, noted that IGAD started implementation of the Nairobi Declaration immediately after its adoption with support from partners such as the European Union, the German Agency for Development, and UNHCR among others. She added that promoting livelihoods and self-reliance was a “major concern for national and global stability and security”.

IGAD expects to achieve the following key outcomes from the deliberations in the next three days.

  • removing policy barriers both at national and regional levels;
  • strengthening regional coordination mechanisms for effective implementation;
  • a comprehensive action plan; and
  • a coherent results framework (M&E Tool) to track progresses.

Central to the principles of the Nairobi Declaration and Action Plan of March 2017 is the promotion of self-reliance and economic resilience for refugees, returnees and host communities. IGAD Member States have committed themselves to:

“Enhance, with the support of the international community, education, training and skills development for refugees to reduce their dependence on humanitarian assistance, and prepare them for gainful employment in host communities and upon return”





14 March 2019, KAMPALA (Uganda): Following successful consultations towards the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons at national level in each of the seven Member States, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) today kick started a “Regional Experts Review Meeting of the Draft Protocol on Free Movement of Persons and its Road Map for Implementation” in Kampala.

 This four-day meeting has drawn high level experts from the African Union, the International Labour Organisation, the UNHCR, the International Organisation for Migration, the Platform for Disaster Displacement, the East African Community,  ECOWAS and International Trade Union Confederation, the German Agency for Development GIZ, the European Union, Switzerland and the United States, as well as Universities of Makerere (Uganda) and Bristol (United kingdom) to deliberate on the final draft provisions of the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons in IGAD Region.

 The aim of the meeting is to undertake a thorough technical review of the Draft Protocol on Free Movement of Persons in IGAD Region and review the Draft Road Map for the Implementation of the said Protocol.

 The Director of Health and Social Development at IGAD, Ms Fathia Alwan, recalled that it has been a year since “IGAD commenced the National Consultative Meetings (NCMs) to deliberate with Member States on the zero draft Protocol on Free Movement of Persons, and seek their inputs for the barriers to free movement and benefits from free movement regime". “These consultations and study form the basis for the substantive provisions of the draft Protocol and its Roadmap that are tabled for your meticulous scrutiny”, she added.

 The ILO Chief Technical Advisor for the Project Free movement of persons and transhumance in the IGAD region, Mr. Richard Lavallée, acknowledged outstanding achievement by IGAD “in setting normative and policy frameworks and migration governance architectures which are operational at national and regional levels”.

 He highlighted that “the ILO is closely working with IGAD on a project called, “Free Movement of Persons and Transhumance in the IGAD Region: Improving Opportunities for Regular Labour Mobility” thanks to the financial support of the European Union”.


12-02-2018, Mogadishu (Somalia): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) yesterday launched the National Consultation Workshop towards the development of the IGAD Protocol on Free Movement of Persons in the IGAD Region in Mogadishu during an inauguration session with Mr. Ali Mohamed Ali, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Somalia, as the Guest of Honour.

This four-day workshop is aimed at getting inputs from national stakeholders and Experts on benefits and barriers to free movement of persons; deriving National Recommendations towards the Provisions of the Protocol and Developing a Road Map for the Negotiation and adoption of the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons in the IGAD Region.

This National Consultative Workshop is bringing in experts on migration and related themes as well as all national stakeholders from each of the Ministries and Authorities of Government, Civil Society Organizations, Academia, Private Sector and Media to contribute to effective migration governance.

Speaking for IGAD Executive Secretary, Dr Ahmed Hassan-HIV & Health Senior Advisor at the Health & Social Development Division, recalled that the creation of a Regime of Free Movement of Persons in the region was an aspiration in the Agreement Establishing IGAD of 1986. He continued that the IGAD Secretariat mandate therefore was to “facilitate Member States to develop a common understanding of benefits and barriers of this Regime of Free Movement of Persons in the Region”.

“The Federal Republic of Somalia is also expected to provide to the IGAD Secretariat information on critical measures and requirements to be acted upon that can fast track the effective conclusion and adoption of this Protocol,” he concluded his opening remarks.

The Ambassador of Ethiopia to Somalia, the Deputy Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (DSRCC) for Somalia, representatives from the European Union, UNHCR, IOM, as well as high level dignitaries from Somalia including the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Somalia and the Director General of Internal Security gave keynote speeches in support of the process while highlighting the benefits of a Protocol for the free movement of persons in the region.

Specific Objectives of the National Consultative Workshop:
a) To gather information on Benefits and Barriers to Free Movement of Persons in IGAD Region;
b) To generate national recommendations towards the Provisions of the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons in the IGAD Region.
IGAD has received a grant from the European Union Emergency Trust Fund with the intention of facilitating the establishment of a free movement regime within the IGAD region. This is aimed at promoting the regularization of the high volume of informal movement that currently takes place, and increase the opportunities for legal mobility.