UN Migration Agency Holds Capacity Building Workshop for Malian Border Officials

Capacity Building, Integrated Border Management

Bamako – The UN Migration Agency (IOM) in Mali, in collaboration with the Malian Ministry for Security and Protection, organised a five-day training (25-29 September) for 10 Malian border officials in border management at the Maison de Partenariat in Bamako.

The participants shared good practices and formulated recommendations to be implemented in the country’s border management policy.

Mali shares 7,561 km of porous borders with its neighbours – Burkina-Faso, Algeria, Mauritania and Niger – and is particularly vulnerable to terrorist group actions, as well as criminal acts such as transnational crime and human trafficking.

Consequently, the capacity building of border officials in border management is a priority in order to consolidate the security situation in the border areas.

Lassana Diombana, trainer and border management assistant at IOM Mali, explained: “IOM acknowledges that security is a prerequisite for the development and continuation of the ongoing stabilization efforts in the Sahel. Development without security is impossible and security without development is ephemeral.”

The participants, many coming from the border region near Kourémalé, south west of Bamako, took part in discussions on how to develop and secure a border post. As the area has a high level of border activity, participants discussed such matters as the legislative framework of a border post, different types of border posts and how to conduct a body check with migrants.

Sergeant Fatouma Diakité from Kati, Mali, said: “Our country has a lot of borders to manage. These trainings are a first step in reinforcing our capacities. It’s not easy to conduct a body search when you have a vulnerable migrant in front of you. Today I can share my experiences and at the same time learning new techniques in order to use my full capacity as a border official.”

The training is part of a series. One of the frameworks of the project is “Strengthening of Security and Border Management in Mali,” which has been financed by the government of Japan. The first training took place in August in Kayes (southwest of Bamako) for 25 participants. The next training will be a training of trainers and will take place In Bamako from 9 October to 10 November in collaboration with European Capacity Building for the Sahel – Mali (EUCAP Sahel).

One of IOM’s objectives is to promote humanitarian and orderly management of migration. It is acknowledged that effective border management can be a powerful tool in the fight against terrorism and cross-border crime, and contribute to the strengthening of national and regional security.

For more information please contact Seydou Tangara at IOM Mali, Tel: +223 76426359, Email: stangara@iom.int