The Palestinian Ambassador to Nigeria, Abdullah Shawesh has expressed dis-satification in the ongoing ceasefire in the fight between Israeli-Hamas, noting that it would pan to nothing if the hostilities were to be continued afterwards.
Shawesh said complete end to the war is what will bring satisfaction to the people of Palestine who are daily under siege.
The envoy, who on Wednesday in Abuja addressed the media on the current situation in Gaza Strip, said over 15,000 Palestinians were killed and about 40% of Palestinian homes totally levelled or have become inhabitable in the over one month bombardment of Gaza by the Israeli forces.
He said the Palestinians are completely not satisfied with the turn of event in Gaza, but are looking towards international community to put real pressure on Israeli to end the war for the ceasefire is but temporal.
He noted that: “There is a big difference between extending the ceasefire and finally putting an end to the open slaughtering of innocent citizens.
“The ceasefire is just a six day process. We cannot talk about ceasefire as I mentioned as there are thousands of innocent people still under the rubbles and many of them still missing. With many still under the rubbles. Many families who had hope that their kids are alive only to discover that after one and half months that the kids are not only dead but their bodies have began to decomposed.”
He however admitted that Palestine has gain a lot of support since the attack on Gaza following an attack on Israel by Hamas on October 7.
Shawesh said, “Today you will find millions of support, Christians, Muslims, all over the world, in particular in the United States and the European countries.
“A lot of dissent voices were raised, many letters were written to the President, Senate and foreign Affairs minister. They were unconditional and unequivocal support and this is a change that is needed for “Palestine effect”.
The Ambassador who said he is a refugee in his country as a result of Israeli forceful takeover of their land, said he has learnt to put his emotions aside to push for the common good of his people.
Canadian Embassy, NIDCOM Collaborate To Manage Migration
Dr. Jamie Christoff, Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, has emphasised the importance of collaborating with Nigerians in the Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) to achieve mutually beneficial migration management outcomes.
The Canadian Envoy made the statement during a visit to NiDCOM Chairman/CEO Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa in Abuja.
He stated, “I understand the impact of large diaspora groups and their contributions to Canada. The Nigerian diaspora is one of our top five migrant groups and a major contributor to Nigeria’s economy. We must assist these Nigerians in migrating on a regular basis.
Christoff went on to say that the two must work together to bridge the gap in Nigerians’ expectations, particularly those who are acting with good intentions, in order to showcase the best of Nigeria.
The envoy stated, “This can be accomplished through regular engagements with Nigerians, knowledge and information sharing on the proper steps to regular migration, and what to expect in Canada.”
According to the Ambassador, he and his team are ready to assist the commission with opportunities, time, and expertise to achieve a better-managed migration.
Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO NiDCOM, welcomed the delegation and expressed her appreciation for the visit, as well as the offer of partnerships, revealing some of the Commission’s ongoing projects with the Nigerian Diaspora in Canada.
She recalled her time in Canada meeting with Nigerian groups and the many positive developments that resulted from the interactions.
The NIDCOM CEO stated, “This year, we will host the Nigeria-Canadian Business Summit in Canada, as well as a Nigeria Day, to bring together this large diaspora group to explore ways to make an impact, both in the host country and back home.”
Dabiri-Erewa reiterated that both countries have numerous opportunities to capitalise on, adding that the Commission, with the assistance of a Councillor in Canada, is working on a Canada Pull Factor as a pilot project to harmonise Nigerian data in Canada with the Diaspora Data Mapping portal.
She also mentioned other strategies implemented by the Commission to engage Nigerians in Diaspora, such as the National Diaspora Policy, the National Diaspora Day Celebration/National Diaspora Merit Award, the Diaspora Investment Trust Fund, the Diaspora Door of Return Festival, and Diaspora Medical Missions, among others.
Don’t Judge Our Performance By Present Political Situation, ECOWAS Insists
Dr. Alieu Touray, President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission, has expressed concern that the current political situation in the subregion has overshadowed the regional bloc’s efforts to address the needs of its citizens.
He said this while lamenting the low trade volume among member states, which is around 12%.
Touray also said the trade volume within the larger African continent was not also impressive as it stands under 20%.
Speaking at the maiden briefing on the activities of the sub-regional body on Wednesday in Abuja, Touray said: “There is so much more that ECOWAS is engaged in, because ECOWAS is present in virtually all facets of human development in the region, planning and providing
for the contemporary needs of the community.
“Unfortunately, these laudable strides in the region’s relentless march towards
an economic union have been overshadowed by contemporary political developments.”.
He said with the strategies and policies in place to encourage trading and movement of goods and people within the subregion, it is disheartening that trade amongst member states is abysmally low, noting that: “At the moment, our intra community trade stands around 12%. On the whole in Africa, intra continental trade is under 20% which is extremely low.”
He stated, “When you look at developed countries, countries that are sufficiently integrated, or regions that are sufficiently reintegrated, intra-continental trade alone is around 60 to 70%.
” So we have a long way to go. Very long way to go and this is why it is important that we open our markets for our own produce, our own manufactured items.”
He also emphasised the importance of having a sufficient local content in subregional production.
Russia Praises ECOWAS’ Partial Lifting Of Sanctions On Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso
Russia has praised the Economic Community of West African States’ (ECOWAS) decision to lift some sanctions imposed on departing members of the bloc, Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso, as a result of military intervention in civilian governance.
An official statement by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Tuesday said: “The window for dialogue between the Sahel States Alliance (SSA) and ECOWAS remains open, and the decisions made at the Abuja summit can be seen as a demonstration of political will in the interest of maintaining Community unity.”
The statement said, “On February 24th, an extraordinary summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) was held in Abuja, Nigeria, where the most pressing regional issues were discussed. The forum resulted in a series of important decisions, including those addressing the preservation of ECOWAS unity in light of the recent announcement by the leadership of Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso of their “immediate” withdrawal from its membership. These countries, amidst the Community’s imposed restrictions, established a new integrative alliance in September 2023, named the “Sahel States Alliance” (SSA), aimed at consolidating efforts in national defense and security.
The forum resulted in a series of important decisions, including those addressing the preservation of ECOWAS unity in light of Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso’s recent announcement of their “immediate” withdrawal from the organisation.
“The Russian side emphasizes that the West African states should determine their own ways to resolve the current situation. The window for dialogue between the SSA and ECOWAS remains open, and the decisions made at the Abuja summit can be seen as a demonstration of political will in the interest of maintaining Community unity.
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