ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia – African Union (AU) Member States have welcomed the launch of the African Diplomatic Indaba on Migration, which took place in Addis Ababa on October 10, 2023.
The platform, supported by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), aims to bring together the diplomatic community, experts, and other stakeholders to share ideas and promote dialogue on the future of migration on the African continent.
Discussions at the launch event focused on migrants’ Return, Readmission, and Reintegration (RRR) in Africa.
In her remarks, Lesotho’s Permanent Representative to the AU, Ambassador Ntšiuoa Sekete, stressed the need for Member States and stakeholders to pay attention to the data and developments that fuel migration. She also called for the elevation of the migration agenda in development plans and the dedication of budgets to support strategies and policies.
Ambassador Sekete also expressed concern over the slow pace of ratification of migration protocols and urged diplomats to support ratification campaigns.
She further encouraged Africa to take the lead in enhancing communication efforts, highlighting the need for Africans to tell their own stories about migration in a manner that highlights and promotes all the important and relevant work in support of migrants.
African migration is reportedly driven by a combination of factors for each country. These include conflict, repressive governance, and limited economic opportunities. The African Centre for Strategic Studies says the number of documented migrants within and from the African region has nearly doubled since 2010.
For Lesotho, studies indicate that migration, both internal and external, continues to be a dominant livelihood strategy for households, with 45% of them reporting at least one member living away from home. Records also indicate that Lesotho has logged an increase in female migration over the past 15 years.
The African Diplomatic Indaba on Migration is expected to provide a platform for ongoing dialogue and cooperation on migration issues among African countries.