By Michael Oche
With the second round of the African Regional Review (ARR) of the Global Compact on Migration (GCM) set to take place in 2024, the African Trade Union Migration Network (ATUMNET) has restated the importance for trade unions in Africa to prepare adequately to engage in the process.
ATUMNET said it has already identified eight areas of the GCM objectives as the focus of its advocacy, where it will submit its perspectives during the review preparatory meetings.
To this end, ATUMNET will be using its annual meeting scheduled for Mauritius to strengthen the capacity of members to engage in the process and also to consolidate on gains from years of advocacy for rights of migrant workers.
Our Correspondent reports that ATUMNET is Africa’s organised labour platform for coordinating workers’ participation in migration governance. The African Regional Organisation of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC-Africa www.ituc-Africa) supervises the network.
“Building on the first round of regional reviews of 2020, the intention is to use the space to showcase alternative approaches for working solutions recognizing what has worked and what should be done to improve the ongoing processes as well as being candid about the challenges and the approaches that are regressing or not working.
“ATUMNET has identified 8 of the GCM objectives as the focus of its advocacy, campaigns and engagement where it will submit its perspectives during the review preparatory meetings and review” a statement from ATUMNET Secretariat ahead of the Mauritius meeting noted.
Over the years, ATUMNET under the supervision of ITUC-Africa has been pivotal and central in amplifying the voices of migrant workers, seeking a need for a change in the narrative and their protection needs to be better integrated in the national, regional and global discourse.
It has also led the advance in the ratification and domestication by African ILO Member States of key ILO Conventions and Protocols relevant to the protection of migrant workers’ rights.
Ahead of its meeting in Mauritius, ATUMNET says it hope to further enhance the capacity of members on the basic knowledge of the responsible and strategic use of the ILO ILS System to protect migrant workers’ rights.
It also hopes to improve protection and promotion of the rights of migrant workers through the advocacy and voices of trade unions and civil society organisations in labour migration governance spaces and processes.
Other expected outcomes of the meeting include: Enhanced Trade unions, civil society and Journalists alliance on deepening social dialogue, inclusion and collaboration to ensure better migration and labour migration governance achieved; Better migration and labour migration governance in Africa continues to take positive and pragmatic shapes.
“African Trade unions and CSOs’ alliances, collaboration, and synergies strengthened and sharpened around the GCM and GFMD processes and position paper developed.
“ATUMNET network members devise strategies for increased contribution of TUs to two ILO ‘s conference on Labour migration.”