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ECOWAS partners UN agency to fight drug trafficking, other crimes

By Cornelius Essien, Abuja   |   04 October 2016   |   4:12 am
 Marcel de Souza, ECOWAS

Marcel de Souza, ECOWAS

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) have signed a memorandum on commitment to effective and integrated implementation of the fight against illicit drug trafficking, related organised crime, corruption, terrorism and drug abuse in West Africa.

The agreement was sealed at the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly.

The letter of cooperation, which was signed by the ECOWAS President, Marcel de Souza, and Mr. Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of UNODC on behalf of the two institutions, indicates that they would constantly evolve measures and programmes to check the crimes and develop economic and human development in the region.

This cooperation between the two organisations is coming when the development, peace and stability of West Africa are being threatened by transnational organised crime, illicit drug trafficking, terrorism, corruption, the laundering of criminal assets and terrorism financing, weakness in the criminal justice system, as well as HIV/AIDS and drug abuse.

After the evaluation of the results of the UNODC Regional Programme and the ECOWAS Plan for West Africa 2008-2014, and considering emerging threats and trends, they both developed new regional programme for West Africa, while ECOWAS elaborated its regional action plan to address illicit drug trafficking, organised crime and drug abuse in West Africa, both covering a 2016 – 2020 implementation period.

The two strategic documents are aimed at mobilising joint efforts to successfully face current and future threats in West Africa.

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