Addis Ababa, July 25,2022(Walta) – The urgency of improving data and statistics to capture the benefits of migration for Africa’s prosperity and resilience was underscored at an Expert Group Meeting on migration statistics, convened by the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA).
The meeting held in Kampala brought together government officials from more than 18 African countries, cross-sector representatives from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Africa, South Sudan, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
Delegates from the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) have also participated in the meeting.
The meeting was informed by a background paper by ECA, entitled ‘towards a coordinated mechanism for collecting and utilisation of accurate and disaggregated migration data for evidence-based policies in Africa’.
The paper unpacks migration patterns, progress and practices and pathways in Africa for the Global Compact for Safe, orderly and Regular Migration’s implementation, involving all stakeholders, according to ECA.
In her remarks delivered by Gideon Rutaremwa at the meeting, the Acting Director of ECA’s Gender, Poverty and Social Policy Division, Edlam Yemeru mentioned that generating migration data was an integral part of leveraging its potential for national development.
She added that human mobility was closely linked to the opening of regional trade in Africa as a means of accelerating recovery from multiple crises – notably, COVID-19 and food insecurity resulting from the war between Ukraine and Russia.
Speaking at the meeting, IGAD’s Head of Mission to the Republic of Uganda, Lucy Daxbacher highlighted the need for improved coordination of existing structures at all levels in order to consolidate efforts in improving migration statistics, according to ENA.
Addressing the meeting, Brian Okengo from AUC’s migration programme emphasized that labour migration data and statistics remain a key pillar in improving migration governance in Africa.
He stressed the need for member States to produce accurate, reliable and high-quality labour migration data to develop evidence-based policies and decisions for the protection and well-being of migrant workers.