8th meeting of the Steering and Coordination Committee of the WAPIS Program (Police Information System for West Africa) in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire
On May 25, 2023, the 8th Meeting of the Steering and Coordination Committee of the Police Information System Program (WAPIS) was held in Abidjan.This steering committee of the WAPIS project succeeds the 2nd meeting of the Steering and Coordination Committee of the AFIS Project (Fingerprint Identification System) component of the WAPIS Program, which was held on May 19, 2023.
The objective of this steering committee is to give the status of the implementation of the recommendations of the 7th meeting of the Steering and Coordination Committee to present the difficulties encountered during the implementation of WAPIS and solutions to address them. , including with regard to the regional platform to make New decisions and recommendations for a better implementation of the project.
The Objectives of this 2nd Meeting of the AFIS Project Steering and Coordination Committee were to give the status of implementation of the recommendations made during the previous session to provide a calendar of actions to be carried out in the coming months by the participating countries and all the other parties concerned (ECOWAS, EU and INTERPOL with the support of CIVIPOL). As for the 8th session of the WAPIS Program Steering and Coordination Committee, its objective was to comprehensively assess the implementation of the WAPIS Program and in particular, the progress made in the application of the decisions and recommendations put forward during its 7th Steering Coordination Committee meeting
During the opening ceremony, the WAPIS Project Manager Mr Richard GOTWE first of all thanked the Ivorian authority and ECOWAS for organizing this Steering Committee meeting. He also indicated that the Digitization of files and data will improve the fight against organized crime and help security in West African countries. He then wished good cooperation between the beneficiary States of the WAPIS System.
Dr. Cyriaque AGNEKETHOM Director of Peacekeeping and Regional Security of the ECOWAS Commission congratulated the Regional Security Division for the efforts made for the realization of the WAPIS project and recalled that it is necessary to encourage and support the beneficiaries of the project meeting difficulties in the implementation in their respective countries so that they can achieve the objectives set by this Regional project.
The representative of the European Union Anne-Catherine CLAUDE for her part reiterated the support of the European Union in the face of security threats in the ECOWAS region. She also wished for continued collaboration between the Member States benefiting from the WAPIS project and Interpol, which is the implementing partner.
On the sidelines of the Steering and Coordination Committee, the delegations present paid a visit to the Data Recording Collection Center (DACORE) in Côte d'Ivoire before holding a round table to exchange experiences with discussions on topics such as ownership, operationalization and sustainability of the WAPIS System on May 24, 2023.
These various sessions provided the opportunity to comprehensively assess the implementation of the WAPIS Program and, in particular, the progress made in the application of the decisions and recommendations put forward during its 7th meeting of the Steering Committee and of Coordination.
The meeting ended with the adoption of the report by the participants and the proposal of recommendations, including those to proced to the resumption of all program activities in Liberia and the resumption of certain operational activities in Mali, in particular training.
The Steering Committee of the WAPIS program has decided to maintain the operational activities in Benin and Ghana at their current level pending the resolution of the problems encountered.