7th UEMOA high-level committee on food security
For the seventh time, UEMOA leaders met to discuss the food and nutrition situation in member countries. The UEMOA high-level committee was held on 10 July in Niamey. Considering the critical pastoral situation, ministers in charge of livestock also participated in this event. Within the UEMOA area, some 3.5 million people are currently in a crisis situation and need urgent food assistance, notably in the Sahelian countries (Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Senegal). Response plans are being implemented. Benin, Côte d’Ivoire and Togo have also elaborated specific response plans for transhumant livestock breeders from Sahelian countries. The high cost of these emergency responses was discussed. It might be cheaper to scale up investments to support structurally vulnerable populations, in line with the objectives of the Global Alliance for Resilience (AGIR). These populations cannot withstand even the smallest shock and suffer from seasonal food shortages during the lean season every year. CILSS is in charge of strengthening the monitoring and evaluation mechanisms to better assess the impact of these plans. Moreover, the SWAC president transmitted a letter to recommend the appointment of a West African ambassador for food and nutrition security who would lobby for greater support from technical and financial partners. The final communiqué puts forward a series of recommendations to member states, CILSS, UEMOA, ECOWAS and partners.