A three-day workshop organized by IOM, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union Commission (AUC) on border management and irregular migration in the IGAD region opens on 26 November in Nairobi, Kenya. The workshop will bring together some 40 officials and experts from ministries with migration related responsibilities and functions, including Ministries of Interior, Foreign Affairs, Labour and Social Affairs, Police, Intelligence and Security. Representatives from neighbouring transit countries such as Chad, Egypt, Libya, Niger, Tunisia and Yemen will also take part in the meeting, alongside representatives from the regional media.
The workshop aims to build on recommendations of the Inter-State and Intra-Regional Cooperation Conference and the IGAD Regional Consultative Process (IGAD-RCP), which was launched in Addis Ababa earlier this year by representatives from the IGAD member states.
Prior to the workshop, IOM in collaboration with IGAD and its member states carried out technical assessments of selected border points in the region to evaluate the technical capacities of immigration officials and of existing infrastructures to identify potential gaps in the management of regional borders.
“This workshop aims to contribute to the AU and IGAD policy processes aimed at improving border management systems within the region,” says Charles Kwenin, IOM’s representative in Addis Ababa.
In addition to discussing the use of information campaigns to ensure potential migrants are aware of their rights and are able to protect themselves from health and other related risks, the workshop will look at how to use migration as a catalyst for regional social and economic integration and cooperation.
The workshop is part of “The East Africa Migration Route Programme: Building Cooperation, Information Sharing and Developing Joint Practical Initiatives among Countries of Origin, Transit and Destination” funded by the European Commission and other co-sponsors including the UK, Italy, Netherlands and Malta.