African Women in Maritime (WIMAFRICA) has been given consultative status on the United Nation’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
The UN body revealed this in a letter addressed to WIMAFRICA, and signed by the Acting Chief, NGO Branch, Office of Intergovernmental Support and Coordination for Sustainable Development Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Marc-André Dorel.
According to the letter, the consultative status entitles WIMAFRICA to designate official representatives to the United Nations headquarters in New York and the United Nations offices at Geneva and Vienna.
WIMAFRICA representatives will also be able to register for and participate in sessions, events, conferences and activities of the United Nations, and organizations in general and special consultative status may designate authorized representatives to sit as observers at public meetings of ECOSOC and its subsidiary bodies, the Human Rights Council and, under certain conditions, the General Assembly and other United Nations intergovernmental bodies.
“I am pleased to inform you that on 21 July 2021, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) adopted the recommendation of the Committee on Non- Governmental Organizations (NGOs) to grant special consultative status to your organization, WIMAFRICA. Please accept our heartfelt congratulations,” the letter read.
The special consultative status also enables WIMAFRICA to submit written statements relevant to the work of the Council on subjects in which these organizations have a special competence; with this creating an avenue for WIMAFRICA to write about regional maritime issues in statements to be circulated by the Secretary-General of the United Nations to the members of the Council.
Meanwhile, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations also makes recommendations to the Council about which organizations in general and special consultative status should make an oral presentation to the Council, as well as the items on which they should be heard.
Commissions and other subsidiary bodies of ECOSOC will be expected to consult with WIMAFRICA on general and special issue; and a commission of ECOSOC may recommend that the regional body with special competence in maritime undertake studies or investigations, or prepare papers for the commission.
WIMAFRICA, like other organizations with special consultative status, is required to submit a report on the activities of the organization in support of the work of ECOSOC and the United Nations once every four years, known as quadrennial reports, as per ECOSOC resolution 1996/31.
This requirement is reinforced through ECOSOC resolution 2008/4 on “Measures to improve the quadrennial reporting procedures.”