Photo: UNDP Nigeria

Yaoundé, Cameroon, 4 October 2021 – The Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC), in collaboration with the eight governors of the Boko Haram-affected territories and the Government of the Republic of Cameroon, today commenced the third edition of the Lake Chad Basin Governors’ Forum.

The two-day forum aims to assess and analyze the political, civil, security and humanitarian situation in the Lake Chad Basin (LCB); provide an opportunity to build on the achievements made since the 2019 forum; and strengthen regional and cross-border cooperation in the fight against insurgency and terrorism in the region.

Since the breakout of the Boko Haram insurgency in the region in 2009, the region has struggled to curtail the impact of the group’s activities, ranging from massive internal and cross-border displacement, the destruction of social fabric and property, human rights abuses and disrupted public services, and limited capacities of government institutions.

In response, the Regional Strategy for the Stabilization, Recovery and Resilience (RSS) of the Boko Haram-affected Areas of the Lake Chad Basin was developed in 2018 as a robust framework for addressing these complex and urgent challenges.[1] The strategy recognizes the need for a comprehensive, multi-sectoral and coordinated set of national and cross-border efforts, noting that collaboration along the humanitarian-development-peace nexus is vital for long-term stabilization, recovery and resilience.

“Despite challenges, we have recorded modest achievements in the attainment of our commitments of 2019. We have made progress from the continued support from the LCB governments, United Nations entities, African Union, Regional Economic Communities, and multilateral and bilateral partners. In addition, the contributions of civil society organizations (CSOs), traditional and religious leaders, the media, and the Multinational Joint Task Force, have been critical,” said Ambassador Mamman Nuhu, Executive Secretary, LCBC and Head of Mission, Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).

The RSS is operationalized through eight Territorial Action Plans (TAPs) for the eight states, regions and provinces most affected by Boko Haram in the LCB region.[2] Although regional in scope, the strategy is predicated on the principle of national and local ownership. Through the governors of the affected territories, national governments facilitate robust and inclusive participation of local communities in the stabilization, recovery and resilience efforts across the region.

“Cross-border cooperation is key to accelerating stabilization and recovery in the Lake Chad Basin. The African Union Commission will therefore contribute to support platforms, such as the Governors’ Forum, that seek to boost collaborative humanitarian and development action in the Lake Chad Basin region,” stated Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security, African Union Commission.

The forum is committed to promoting dialogue, enhancing cross-border security cooperation, and facilitating cross-border trade and economic recovery to boost livelihoods. The proximity of the governors to the constituencies affected by the crisis affords them an indispensable role in guiding and monitoring the implementation of the stabilization strategy and other initiatives for stabilization, peacebuilding and sustainable development in a way that can translate into positive change on the ground.

As a platform for engaging in frank discussions, the LCB Governors’ Forum provides participants with the opportunity to draw lessons on cross-cutting transnational challenges and coordinating joint actions and solutions. “We will engage Forum participants on how governments and governors can reinforce community resilience, expand livelihoods choices, increase access to social services and secure peace in war-torn territories,” highlighted Ahunna Eziakonwa, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Regional Director for Africa.

In May 2018, the governors of the eight worst-affected areas of Cameroon, Chad, Niger and Nigeria met in Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria to establish the Lake Chad Basin Governors’ Forum for Regional Cooperation on Stabilization, Peacebuilding and Sustainable Development.

The second Governors’ Forum, held in Niamey, Niger in July 2019, reiterated the necessity to serve as a platform for cross-border dialogue, cooperation and exchange, and to support ongoing national, regional and multilateral efforts towards stabilization in the LCB region. The Forum also welcomed the launch of the Regional Stabilization Facility (RSF) to support the implementation of the RSS and ensure that local ownership of the RSF rests with the states, regions and provinces.

Download the final joint communiqué.

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For more information, contact:

Laetitia Ouoba, Communications Specialist, RSS Secretariat | laetitia.ouoba@undp.org

Joseph Lereh Fajong, Communications and Advocacy Specialist, UNDP Cameroon | joseph.fajong@undp.org

Alvin Odins, African Union Commission | odinukweg@africa-union.org

Ugochukwu Kingsley Ahuchaogu, Communications Specialist, UNDP Sub-Regional Hub for West and Central Africa | ugochukwu.kingsley@undp.org

Christabel Chanda Ginsberg, Communications Specialist, UNDP Kenya | Christabel.ginsberg@undp.org

Michelle Mendi Muita, Communications Specialist, UNDP Regional Programme | michellemendi.muita@undp.org

 

Notes for the Editors:

About the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC)

The Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) was established on 22 May 1964 with a focus on the management of the Lake Chad and its shared water resources, preservation of the ecosystems and promotion of regional integration, peace, security, and development in the Lake Chad Region.

Learn more at www.cblt.org/

About the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations build integrated, lasting solutions for people and the planet.

Learn more at www.africa.undp.org

About the African Union Commission

The African Union Commission (AUC) is the AU’s secretariat and undertakes the day-to-day activities of the Union. It is based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Some of its functions, include representing the AU and defending its interests under the guidance of and as mandated by Assembly and the Executive Council and acting as the custodian of the AU Constitutive Act and all other OAU/AU legal instruments.

Learn more at www. https://au.int/en/commission

 

Follow the conversation @lcbc_cblt

Hashtag: #GovForum2021 #LakeChadBasin

 

[1] Regional Strategy for the Stabilization, Recovery & Resilience of the Boko Haram-affected Areas of the Lake Chad Basin Region, Lake Chad Basin Commission and African Union Commission, August 2018 (http://www.cblt.org/en/news/regional-stabilization-strategy).

[2] Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States in Nigeria; Diffa region in Niger; Lac and Hadjer-Lamis Provinces in Chad; Far North and North Regions in Cameroon.

 

 

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