UNOWAS/CNMC celebrate 20 years
On the 30th of August, UNOWAS and CNMC celebrated 20 years of engagement in the prevention of conflict and the consolidation of peace in West Africa and the Sahel. This monumental occasion was used as an opportunity to revisit the critical work of UNOWAS and CNMC and showcase the major achievements that have been accomplished in the past 20 years. In attendance were former SRSGs Ahmedou Ould Abdallah, Said Djinnit (remotely), Mohamed Ibn Chambas; SRSG Wane of MINUSMA, Senegalese Foreign Minister Aissata Tall Sall, Nigeria’s Attorney General and Minister of Justice Abubakar Malami, Cameroon’s Ambassador to Senegal Jean Ntonga, ECOWAS Commission President Oumar Alieu Touray and the African Union High Representative for the Sahel, Maman Sidikou and Ibrahim Fall. Also in attendance were members of the diplomatic community and UN Regional Directors and RCs of the region.
SRSG ANNADIF, in his role as Head of UNOWAS and Chairman of CNMC, welcomed the guests and reaffirmed a commitment to peace and democratic consolidation in West Africa and the Sahel. Previous SRSGs touched on their own personal testimonies of their time in office and acknowledged the evolving nature of the political and security context in the region. All speakers expressed concerns on issues such as violent extremism, democratic backsliding and increased geopolitical competition among foreign powers in the region. The ECOWAS Commission President and the AU representative also underscored how partnerships between the UN and regional organizations have been crucial in addressing these challenges and informing how they should be pursued in the future.
Further, as a model for the peaceful resolution of border disputes, the commendable achievements of CNMC were recognized and celebrated. The head of the Nigerian delegation to the CNMC, and Ambassador of Cameroon to Senegal as representative of the head of the Cameroonian delegation to the CNMC, both congratulated the UN for its role in the peaceful resolution of the border dispute between their two countries. Particular attention was paid to the physical demarcation of 2050 km out of their 2100km common border and commitment was pledged by all parties to complete the demarcation process.
Together for peace - Happy 20th Anniversary UNOWAS/CNMC!