By Princess-Ekwi Ajide Abuja
As part of series of INTERPOL visits to strengthen cooperation and review ongoing activities with ECOWAS and other institutions in Nigeria, an INTERPOL delegation led by its Executive Director of Police Services, Mr. Stephen Kavanagh paid a working visit to the Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr. Abdel-Fatau Musah, in his office in Abuja.
Mr. Kavanagh, was full of praises for the Commissioner Musah led West African Police Investigation System, WAPIS, project and the ECOWAS Commission for their efforts in the fight against cybercrime, counterterrorism and illegal migration in the region.
In his response, Dr Musah indicated that 2023 is a year marked by serious security challenges, terrorism, and trafficking hence the need to strengthen cooperation between ECOWAS and INTERPOL.
THE COMMISSIONER EMPHASISED THE IMPORTANCE OF INTERPOL WORKING MORE CLOSELY WITH GIABA, THE ECOWAS BODY LEADING THE FIGHT AGAINST MONEY LAUNDERING AND FINANCING OF TERRORISM IN WEST AFRICA.
He also called for a win-win relationship and reciprocity between third parties and ECOWAS in joint efforts to combat transnational organized crime.
In a remark, the Head of WAPIS Programme, Mr. Richard Gotwe, noted that the WAPIS project is in its operationalization phase at the national level, and more than half of the Member States already have the system installed and operational.
He re-echoed the need for the strengthening of cooperation at the regional level for the full achievement of the project’s objectives.
Mr. Kavanagh, was accompanied on the visit by some top functionaries of the Service including the Assistant Director IT Services, Mr. Theo Badege, Head of the West Africa Police Information System (WAPIS) Programme, Richard Gotwe, and WAPIS Programme Coordinator at the ECOWAS Commission, Mohamed Yansaneh