ECOWAS launches $15b poverty reduction programme

In an effort to fight poverty, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) launched a Regional Poverty Reduction Programme in Dakar on April 22, 2011, which the ECOWAS President, Mr James Gbeho says would need $15 billion to implement .

So far, ECOWAS has been able to secure $7 billion to support the programme.

“Closing this gap will be the main objective of the resources mobilization strategy,” Mr Gbeho said, to show that, the programme faces a huge challenge for it to be implemented successfully.

The programme has three main objectives. It will provide “strategic guidelines to better prioritise the regional programmes and combine them with national programmes to maximize the effects of growth and poverty reduction”, said Professor Bemba N’galadzo, Commissioner of the ECOWAS Macroeconomic Policy Directorate.

Prof Bemba added that the programme would offer member states better visibility of all the regional programme to enable states take them into account  in the preparation of national strategies.

In order to make the programme effective, he said, its implementation and evaluation would be guarded. There will be an institutional mechanism for the creation of a regional poverty unit as well as national poverty reduction strategy programme monitoring and implementation teams, Prof Bemba said.

Source: The Spectator

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