07-11-2016, Kampala: The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) this morning opened the 8th Regional Migration Coordination Committee (RMCC) in collaboration with the Ugandan Ministry of Internal Affairs in Kampala in order to prepare for the First IGAD Sectoral Ministerial Meeting on Migration scheduled for November 10th, 2016.
The participants to the 5th Meeting of the IGAD RMCC are Heads of Immigration, Heads of Labor, and Chairpersons of National Coordination Mechanisms from the IGAD Member States as well as IGAD Focal Points from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and representatives of the IGAD Secretariat. They will be joined by IGAD development partners during the two following days for the IGAD Regional Consultative Process (RCP) on migration.
On top the usual objectives of RMCCs that consist of sharing experiences and good practices on migration policy development, making recommendations on how best to use the migration governance structure in order to develop and implement migration policies, and report back on the implementation of the recommendations from previous RMCC meetings, the main specific objectives of this one-day meeting were to finalize a Terms of Reference for the IGAD Committee of Ministers on Migration and to discuss and review a draft Declaration to be issued by the Ministers on November 10th. In other words, the 5th RMCC Meeting is meant to serve as a preparation platform for the Member States towards the ministerial meeting. Discussions are centered on Migration policy development agreeing on the specific actions for recommendation to the 1st Ministerial meeting.
During a brief opening session, Director General for Neighboring Countries and IGAD-Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, Mr. Girma Temesgen, in his capacity as Chair of the official opening, declared that proper migration governance required “a holistic approach by harnessing political will to devise sub-national, national, regional, and international strategies for curbing irregular migration”. He highlighted the need to come up with tangible recommendations to the Ministerial meeting.
Speaking for the Executive Secretary of IGAD, the Director of Economic Cooperation and Social Development Division-IGAD, Mr. Elsadeg Abdalla, reminded the audience that the RMCC was an “integral part of IGAD and the Member States most important technical forum to coordinate all regional migration matters”. “The Ministerial meeting will establish the IGAD Sectoral Ministerial Meeting on Migration, whose aim is to provide political leadership and ensure the implementation of recommendations of the RMCC and RCP in view of implementing the IGAD Regional Migration Policy Framework”, he continued.
The Programme Manager of IGAD Health and Social Development, Ms. Fathia Alwan, in her introductory remarks thanked the participants for all their efforts during the past RMMCCs and RCPs since 2011. She pointed out to the importance of the 5th RMCC. The IGAD Migration Coordinator, Ms. Caroline Njuki, outlined the agenda of the day for the participants to adopt and start work after an Official from Uganda formally declared the meeting open.