By Fatoumatta K Jallow
Tango in partnership with “Enda Diapol”, a Senegalese based organization, commenced a two-day stakeholders meeting for the support and promotion of cross-border multi-stakeholder approach to conflict prevention and sustainable peace-building in southern Senegambia. The stakeholder meeting took place yesterday, Monday 25th September 2017. The 24-month project aims to build the capacities of non-state actors as well as enhance the quality of their partnership with local authorities, regarding the definition, implementation and monitoring of cross-border peace and security activities, in the Senegambia region.
The objective of the meeting is to share with cross-border stakeholders, various challenges of partnership between Local Authorities and Local Organizations of Cross-Border Areas (LOCA) and to show cross-border stakeholders the partnership development strategies they can set up. This according to the organisers, will enable stakeholders get a good grasp of the constraints and challenges related to partnership development and management, within cross-border areas and provide participants with tools and methods on partnership management strategies.
Mr. Ousman Yabo, the Director of Tango during his deliberations, thanked “Enda Diapol” for securing the funds to hold this stakeholders meeting. He said the Senegalease based organisation has built partnership with “Tango” to ensure that the issues of illegal businesses, conflict, stealing of animals and the smuggling of illegal substances, are addressed.
Mr. Yabo said they are partnering with Senegal and Guinea Bissau because ‘‘we’’ are all affected; that as one people they should see how to avoid conflicts and many unpleasant happenings between their countries.
Mr. Yabo expressed the hope that they will build the capacities of participants, at the end of the two-day meeting so that when they return to their various communities, they will also build the capacities of people in their own communities on how to avoid conflict and illegal business activities.
Fabakary Sanneh, the Chairman of LRR said the cross-border stakeholders meeting coordinated by “Ender Diapol”, is geared to bringing solutions on the maintenance of peace within the Senegambia sub-region.
He said this meeting is important because it incorporates almost all stakeholders within the three countries. ‘‘The aim of the stakeholders meeting is to enhance the partnership in trying to resolve conflict and maintain peace,’’ the Chairman said; that when there is no strong partnership, there will be no peace.
Abdoulaye Diallo, an ICT Consultant from Senegal and Abdoul Wahab Talla, who is a paramount Chief in one of the regions in Senegal, said the project aims to support Senegal’s decentralization process by making the Casamance region an economic development hub; that this proactive policy aims to contribute to peace efforts in the region and stabilize border areas through communities’ socio-economic development by improving the peace and security condition of the area. They held that through this it will help to promote the emergence of a cross-border and participatory approach to conflict prevention and sustainable peace building policies by removing barriers between non-state stakeholders (n-SSs) and local authorities (LAs), on the one hand, and between the strategies and policies of the countries concerned, on the other hand.