• WADPN

West African Common Position towards the United Nations General Assembly Session (UNGASS) 2016 on th

Communiqué

“West African Common Position towards the United Nations General Assembly Special Session 2016 on the World Drug Problem’’

20 January, 2016 in Accra, Ghana

We, representatives of government ministries, law enforcement agencies, drug policy experts and civil society who participated in the Regional Consultation on Drug Policy Reform on “The Road to UNGASS” which was held in Ghana from 19-20 January 2016, which attracted 11 West African countries namely Benin, ‪Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Cote D’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Nigeria, Senegal and Sierra Leone hereby make the following declaration with respect to drug policy reform in West Africa;

Reaffirming the Political Declaration and Plan of Action on International Cooperation, the Common African Position towards UNGASS, AU Plan of Action on Drug Control and the ECOWAS Regional Action Plan to address drug trafficking, production and consumption, and calling upon West Africa Member States to take the measures necessary to fully implement the actions set out therein, with the view to attaining, in timely manner their goals and targets.

Acknowledging the serious threat posed by drug trafficking and production to governance, peace and security stability and economic growth in West Africa, a region that has only recently emerged from decades of violent conflict;

Recognising the efforts made by Member States to comply with the provisions of the single Conventions on Narcotic Drug of 1961 as amended by the 1972 Protocol, the Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, and the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances of 1988;

Acknowledging the threat of drug use to public health and social development in West Africa;

Mindful of the current drug policy that has fostered abuses of human rights of drug users, burdened the criminal justice system, deterioration of public health, proliferation of violence, spread of HIV, hepatitis, tuberculosis prevalence and taking priority away from effective treatment and rehabilitation for people who use drugs;

Acknowledging that narcotic drugs trafficking is a major problem that threatens security, social welfare, economic development and political stability in West Africa;

Welcoming the opportunity that the United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) 2016 on the world drug problem provides the region to review its progress in the International Cooperation against the World Drug problem;

Recalling that the world drug problem remains a common and shared responsibility that requires effective and increased international cooperation;

We hereby recommend the following inputs towards the contribution of Member States to the outcome document of the UN General Assembly Special Session:

Drugs and Health

· Tackle drugs from public health perspective and not only as a national security and safety issues;

· Allocate more resources to facilitate treatment, interventions and facilities for drug users;

· Integrate harm reduction in national drug policies to complement demand and supply reduction;

· Institute harm reduction programmes and facilitate access to health care in prisons;

· Make available and accessible substitution treatments and risk reduction measures to drug users

· Support and create an enabling environment for the private sector and CSOs to get involved in treatment, rehabilitation and recovery services;

Drugs and Crime

· Equip adequately the law enforcement agencies in border regions, port of entries and exits to respond effectively to drug trafficking within the region;

· Strengthen the law enforcement agencies technical capacities;

· Ensure balance and proportionality in both drug demand and supply policies and direct the punitive criminal sanction component of the policies to drug traffickers and suppliers;

· Ensure strict law enforcement for drug traffickers and particularly those who target minors;

· Promote collaboration within the region in order to increase the frequency of the identification and capture of major drug barons and cartels;

Drugs and Alternative Development

· Promote alternative livelihoods programmes for individuals, families and communities whose vulnerabilities makes them susceptible to engaging in illicit drug production;

· Explore the possibilities of the production of cannabis for pharmaceutical, cosmetologically and industrial purposes;

Policy and Legal Reforms

· Allocate adequate resources for institutions to undertake research and support evidence based drug policies;

· Promote public health and human rights perspective that is guided a drug policy in addition to criminal justice approach;

· Harmonize drug legislation within the West African sub region to deny drug traffickers a safe haven in West Africa;

· Promote and operationalise alternative measures to incarceration or non-custodial sentencing mechanisms for minor non-violent drug related offence in accordance to the international drug conventions.

Drug Use Education

· Promote evidence based programmes on Drug education, rehabilitation and treatment centres;

· Enhance Information, Education and Communication /Behavioural Change (IEC/BCC) actions to reduce drug consumption prevalence;

Essential Medicines for Palliative Care and Pain Relief

· Ensure the provision of opiates and other essential uncontrolled medicine for palliative care and pain relief as enshrined in WHO convention;

· Provide access and support for opiates and other essential and controlled medicines for palliative and pain relief as enshrined in the WHO convention;

Civil Society Engagement and Support

· Strengthen collaboration between civil society and government in the effort to address the risk associated with drug trafficking, consumption and production; and

· Support civil society organisations working in the field of prevention, treatment and recovery.

On behalf of 2016 conference delegates

This communique done in Accra this day 20thof January 2016.

Signed:


S/N

Signee

Designation

Institution/Organisation

Country

1.

Henry Tachie-Menson

Director

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration

Ghana

2.

Abdulai Haruna Alhassan

Deputy Director

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration

Ghana

3.

Elikem K. Ahadzi

Assistant Director

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration

Ghana

4.

Yaw Akrasi-Sarpong

Executive Secretary

Narcotics Control Board (NACOB)

Ghana

5.

Michael Addo

Divisional Supervisor

Narcotics Control Board (NACOB)

Ghana

6.

Juddy Mensah

Head of Department

Narcotics Control Board (NACOB)

Ghana

7.

Sylvester Koomson

Central Regional Commander

NACOB

Ghana

8.

Adamu Mohammed

Focal Point Ghana

West Africa Drug Policy Network- Ghana Chapter

Ghana

9.

Mary Eyram Ashinyo

Public Health Physician

Mandela Washington Fellow

Ghana

10.

Aïda Sylla

Chef de la Division Santé Mentale

Ministry of Health

Senegal

11.

Abdoulaye Ba

Directeur Adjoint des Affaires Criminelles  et des Grâces Présidentielles

Ministry of Justice

Senegal

              12.

Matar Diop

Coordonnateur du Comité Interministériel de Lutte Contre la drogue

Ministry of Interior

Senegal

             13.

Idrissa Cissé

Directeur De l’Office Central De Répression du Trafic Illicite des Stupéfiants (OCRTIS)

Ministry of Interior

Senegal

14.

Saka Orou

Délégué Général du Comité Interministériel de Lutte Contre l’Abus de Stupéfiants et de Substances Psychotropes (DG-CILAS)

Ministry of Interior

Benin

15.

Woudecon  Médard

Chef  Office Central de Répression du Trafic Illicite de Drogue (OCERTID)

Ministry of Interior

Benin

16.

Ayemonna Houngan Claire

Président du comité provisoire des droits de l’homme

Human Right Institution

Benin

17.

Houinsou Dieudonné

Focal Point

West Africa Drug Policy Network – Benin Chapter

Benin

               18.

 Chukwumah, Gloria Modupe Omatie

Director HOD Food & Drug services Department

Federal Ministry of Health

Abuja – Nigeria

19.

Morie Lengor

Director of Crime Services/ Chairman of transnational organised crime

Ministry of Interior

Sierra Leone

20.

Albert Macauley

Head of Human Resource of Sierra Leone Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA )

Ministry of Interior

Sierra Leone

21.

Augustine Sheku

Permanent Secretary

Ministry of Internal Affairs and Immigration Department

Sierra Leone

22.

Krouma Mamadou

Secrétaire Général du Comité Interministériel de Lutte Anti-Drogue (CILAD)

Minister of Interior

Cote d’Ivoire

23.

Binate Abdouramane

Directeur de la Police des Stupéfiants et des Drogues (DPSD)

Minister of Interior

Cote d’Ivoire

24.

Francisco Julio Sanha

Chief of the National Committee on Drugs

Ministry of Justice

Guinea Bissau

25.

Badilé Paulo Sanca

Police Judiciaire

Ministry of Interior

Guinea Bissau

26.

Eloisa Borges

The Executive Secretary of the National Commission on Drugs

Ministry of Justice

Cape Verde

27.

Tall Aguibou

Coordinateur National du Comité Interministeriel de lutte contre la Drogue

Ministry of Interior

Guinea

28.

Camara Farimba

Directeur Général de l’office Central Anti-Drogue (OCAD)

Ministry of Interior

Guinea

29.

Esther Grant

Division of Rehabilitation at the Ministry of Health

Ministry of Health

Liberia

30.

Anthony Souh

Director General of Liberia Drug Enforcement Agency (LDEA)

Ministry of Interior

Liberia

31.

Olubusayo Akinola

Programme Officer – Drug Demand Reduction

Economic Community Of West African States (ECOWAS)

Nigeria

32.

Idrissa Ba

WACD Commissioner

West Africa Commission on Drugs (WACD)

Senegal

33.

Alpha Abdoulaye Diallo

WACD Commissioner

West Africa Commission on Drugs (WACD)

Guinea

                 34.

Christine Kafando

WACD Commissioner

West Africa Commission on Drugs (WACD)

Burkina

35.

Cheikh Toure

Regional Programme Coordinator

United Nation Office on Drugs and Crime

Nigeria

36.

Babacar Diouf

Experts on Drug and Prevention Health

United Nation Office on Drugs and Crime

Senegal

                 37.

Lansana Gberie

UNGASS Consultant

Open Society Foundations

Sierra Leone

                 38.

Isidore S. Obot

Executive Director

Centre for Research and Information on Substance Abuse in Africa (CRISA)

Nigeria

              39.

Adeolu Ogunrombi

Regional Coordinator

West Africa Drug Policy Network (WADPN)

Nigeria

            40.

Maria-Gorreti Ane

Africa Consultant

International Drug Policy Consortium (IDPC)

Ghana

            41.

Nana Asantewa Afadzinu

Executive Director

West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI)

Ghana

0 views