A seven-member delegation from Botswana is in Ghana to understudy the processes and development of the country’s National Migration Policy (NMP).

According to Mr Lekgotla Phiri, leader of the Botswana delegation, the Botswana team was in Ghana to learn from Ghana’s experience, the processes the country went through in developing its migration policy and the challenges encountered.

Mr Phiri, who made this known at a meeting with officials of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Ghana’s Inter-Ministerial Steering Committee on Migration (IMSCM) and the Ministry of the Interior in Accra, yesterday, explained that Botswana was in the process of developing a Migration Policy, the Draft of which was expected to be ready by the end of July 2016.

He said the attention of Botswana was drawn by IOM to work that had been done in Ghana on the development of a Migration Policy for the country which necessitated the study tour that was expected to help  enhance work in progress for the development of a policy for Botswana.

In a presentation, Mr Daniel Kweku Sam, National Project Officer, Migration and Development, IOM, said Ghana had had its fair share of migration challenges which required a governance framework to effectively tackle—hence the formulation of NMP.

Mr Sam said maximizing the positive relationship between migration and development had become especially relevant in this era of globalization, even though that had long been the focus of IOM’s work.

He said the objective of IOM’s migration and development programme was, therefore, to contribute to the work of the international community to harness the development potential of migration for the benefit of both societies and migrants to contribute to sustainable development and poverty reduction.

He pledged the commitment of IOM to the principle that humane and orderly migration that benefitted both migrants and society, adding that IOM would continue to partner the international community to assist in meeting the operational challenges of migration, advance understanding of migration issues, encourage social and economic development through migration and work towards effective respect for human dignity and well-being of migrants.

Mr Sam said just as it had done for Ghana, IOM was prepared to support Botswana in the development of a policy to manage that country’s migration challenges

A representative of the Ministry of the Interior, Mr Walter Kwao Anati, noted that although the policies enshrined in the NMP document did not provide an all-round panacea or solution for all our migration challenges, they, nevertheless, provided the framework and direction for dealing with these issues and for harnessing the opportunities and potential that migration could provide for poverty reduction.

Mr   said the policy also provided for an action plan over the short, medium and long term to guide the implementation of the policy initiatives and objectives.

He underscored the importance of the role of IMSCM and all the MDAs, Development Partners, the Centre for Migration Studies, University of Ghana, and various stakeholders for their co-operation, commitment and untiring efforts in the development of the policy and expressed the hope that the Botswana delegation would employ such tools in the development of their policy.

The Government of Ghana formulated a comprehensive NMP to help manage its internal, intra-regional and international migration flows for poverty reduction and sustained national development.

The Policy, which was launched in April, this year, is a respond to a specific set of challenges and concerns such as the brain drain, rapid urbanization and rural-urban migration, and pervasive and growing trends in human trafficking, among others.

Source: ISD (G.D. Zaney and Sule Jotie)