ActionAid Nigeria Urges ECOWAS to Promote Diplomacy and Dialogue in Response to Niger Coup
The General Assembly of ActionAid Nigeria has issued a strong call to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), urging a focus on diplomacy and dialogue as the preferred approach to address the recent coup d’état in Niger Republic. The Assembly emphasized that a military intervention could lead to dire consequences for neighboring nations, particularly Nigeria.
In a press release delivered by Prof Patricia Donli, former Board Chair of ActionAid, following a comprehensive assessment of the nation’s situation, it was highlighted that Niger’s pivotal role as a buffer between Nigeria and the Sahel Region necessitates the preservation of peace and the upholding of democratic principles within the region.
While vehemently denouncing the Niger Coup, ActionAid Nigeria stated: “We implore ECOWAS to leverage its influence strategically toward this end, guarding against the potential escalation of global power rivalry in the region.”
Addressing the ongoing economic challenges within the country, the General Assembly of AAN called upon both federal and state governments to prioritize the establishment of sustainable and credible social welfare programs that extend beyond mere monthly fund disbursements for short-term relief.
Emphasizing the necessity to tailor these programs to vulnerable populations, including low-income families, women, youth, and People with Disabilities (PWDs), the organization underscored the importance of transparent communication with the public and the prompt and equitable delivery of essential aid.
Regarding the Student Loan Act, ActionAid Nigeria urged the government to ensure an equitable distribution of education loans, with special attention given to marginalized students. They stressed that effective implementation of the act should be accompanied by robust support systems encompassing financial literacy initiatives, career counseling, and job creation schemes.
This, they argued, would enhance the employability of loan recipients post-graduation, ensuring that loans reach those in need while fostering inclusivity and equal access to higher education for all aspiring Nigerian students.
In the realm of long-term food security, the organization advocated for strategic investments by federal and state governments in promoting agriculture, rural development, and empowerment of local communities to bolster food production. These efforts, they believed, would not only enhance the nation’s ability to feed its populace but also create a resilient and self-reliant agricultural system.
Addressing the recurrent threat of flooding, ActionAid Nigeria urged all levels of government to prioritize urban planning and environmental infrastructure development. They called for substantial investment in flood control measures, drainage systems, and sustainable urban development practices to mitigate the impact of flooding on communities.
Furthermore, the organization called on the government to strategically invest in critical sectors such as healthcare, education, infrastructure, and technology to generate employment, enhance public services, and elevate the overall quality of life for Nigerians. They asserted that prioritizing these key areas would stimulate economic development, attract foreign investment, and position Nigeria for sustained growth and resilience.
Commenting on the upcoming governorship elections in Bayelsa, Imo, and Kogi States, ActionAid Nigeria urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to proactively collaborate with relevant stakeholders, including security agencies, to ensure a secure environment for peaceful elections. They emphasized the urgency of addressing targeted attacks on INEC offices nationwide and addressing security concerns in various parts of the country.[logo-slider]