The ECOWAS Commission, through its Directorate of Political Affairs (DPA), will hold a virtual round-table to discuss the human security implications on ECOWAS political processes amid the Covid-19 pandemic on Friday, April 30, 2021.

Through knowledge exchange, the round-table participants will be brainstorming on ways to mobilise and enhance expertise on public health as a human security priority for conflict prevention in the ECOWAS region.

Coming within the framework of the European Union (EU) funded ECOWAS Peace and Security Architecture and Operations (EPSAO) project, officials, stakeholders and experts are expected to deliberate on strategies that would contribute to minimising or mitigating the impact of human security-related challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic even as ECOWAS Member States carry on with their respective elections and other political related activities across the region.

The Round-table will also distinctly measure whether gender-responsive and intersectional approaches have been sufficiently integrated into the Covid-19 containment strategies while highlighting best practices on the mitigation of the effects of future pandemics on human security in the region.

Additionally, participants will examine the review of the resilience of these strategies and response mechanisms are given that external factors will continue to affect the region in the mid to long term.

Also to be assessed, is the ECOWAS Commission’s response to Covid-19 related human security challenges in the region, including a situational analysis of the impact of Covid-19 on peace and security, while experiences, challenges, lessons and recommendations by the Member States on strategies adopted to carry out the various political activities during the pandemic will be shared.

The meeting is being convened with the support of the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) through the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH within the framework of the ECOWAS Peace and Security Architecture and Operations (EPSAO).

It is part of a series of discussions on health, peace and security in the context of the upcoming maiden West Africa Peace and Security Innovation (WAPSI) Forum envisioned for the third quarter of 2021.