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ECOWAS Commissioner for Human Development and Social Affairs, Prof. Fatou Sow Saar, Calls for Resolution of WACSOF’S Current Challenges

The General Secretary of the West African Civil Society Forum (WACSOF), Mr. Kop’ep Dabugat, paid a courtesy visit to the ECOWAS Commissioner for Human Development and Social Affairs, Prof. Fatou Sow Sarr as the official entry point of WACSOF to ECOWAS. The purpose of the visit was to brief her on the current state of WACSOF and request the partnership of ECOWAS in addressing matters crucial to its smooth operation and functioning for greater impact in supporting the ECOWAS agenda.

During the meeting, Mr. Dabugat informed Prof. Fatou Sow Sarr that despite the internal challenges being experienced by the organization of recent, WACSOF is back in business, and waxing stronger. He also mentioned that the organization’s secretariat is now fully operational, with a strong communications infrastructure in place, and with a set of focused outreach programs being rolled out to effectively mobilize and engage the civil society across the region. He added that the organization has initiated several programs to address emerging developments across the region as well as to strengthen its institutional processes and systems. He added that the organization plans to convene its Peoples’ Forum (General Assembly) in July 2024.

Concerning the current internal situation of WACSOF, Mr. Dabugat informed the Commissioner that while WACSOF continues to struggle with its challenges, the civil society space across the region continues to remain in disarray. Hence, he drew her attention to the need for ECOWAS to intervene. He further informed her that in order to finally address the current internal situation in WACSOF, the organization’s secretariat is currently engaging ECOWAS Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace, and Security (PAPS), Ambassador Abdel-Fatau Musah and his team towards convening a dialogue and mediation process. While thanking her for receiving him, Mr. Dabugat emphasized his commitment to the goal of reclaiming and strengthening WACSOF for a more harmonious partnership with ECOWAS.

In response, Prof. Fatou Sow Sarr emphasized her strong interest in working together with civil society, while regretting the internal divisions within WACSOF. She also emphasized that such a situation of crisis within an organization discourages partners from being involved with the organization. While drawing attention to the need for WACSOF to find a lasting solution to its current challenges, she mentioned that she would consider supporting the organization to solve its problems as a first step towards strengthening its institutional capacity. She also stated her commitment to explore being involved in the efforts to convene a dialogue as earlier mentioned. She believes that this will assist WACSOF to navigate towards a lasting solution for its current challenges. Her goal is to restore a robust and unified WACSOF that will be an effective platform for the mobilization of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in West Africa.

West African Civil Society Forum (WACSOF), Secretariat

8, Jaba Close, Opposite FCDA Minister’s gate) Area 11, Garki

Abuja, Nigeria.


Phone: +234 903 393 9809Website:

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