The European Union has announced the mobilisation of 52.5 million euros to support resilience, jobs and stability in the Sahel and Lake Chad regions.
The assistance is intended to support new and ongoing programmes in the Sahel and Lake Chad under the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa (EUTF), the European Commission said in a press release.
“The prosperity and security of the European Union is closely linked to that of the Sahel” said Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen.
The commissioner added that the new programmes approved under the Trust Fund for Africa, worth 52.5 million euros, would focus on increasing resilience, employment and stability in the Sahel and Lake Chad region, while also contributing to the response to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Together with our partner countries we are addressing their most pressing needs and providing the necessary assistance to respond to the evolving situation, in particular, for the most vulnerable,” Urpilainen said.
More specific, additional 15 million euros is intended for Mali, 15 million in Niger, eight million in Guinea, seven million in Burkina Faso, 4.25 million in Chad and more than 3.26 million in Senegal, .Urpilainen said.
In Niger, two new programmes in the Western region were adopted – 15 million euros provided to to strengthen economic resilience in Tillabéry and promote management of natural resources, biodiversity and the resilience of agro-pastoral communities.
In Burkina Faso, a new programme amounting to seven million euros will support the deployment of several units of the National Gendarmerie to secure volatile areas in the Sahel region while in Chad, an ongoing programme to strengthen resilience and support local communities will receive an additional 4.25 million euros, the official said.
Mali will receive 15 million to strengthen security and border management support
programme, as well as strengthen trust between the internal security forces and populations.
According to United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, both the Sahel and Lake Chad have been facing armed conflicts and violence for many years.
The humanitarian situation is extremely dire with limited access with 3.8 million internally displaced across both regions and 270,000 fleeing to neighbouring countries as refugees.