Circular mission of the WAQSP Manager in Accra (Ghana)

Mr. Bernard BAU, the West Africa Quality System Programme (WAQSP) Manager, carried out a field mission in Accra, Ghana, from July 31 to August 1st, 2019.

The purpose of this visit is to assess the level of implementation of the activities under his supervision in Ghana, particularly with regard to the WAQSP and WACOMP (West Africa Competitiveness Programme). Guided in the field by the National Technical Coordinator of the WAQSP, Mr. James Hammond, Mr. Bau held several working sessions: with the Resident Representative of UNIDO, Mr. Fakhruddin Azizi then with the Directorate of the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) led by his DG, Prof. Alex Dodoo. "The adoption of Ghana's National Quality Policy (NQP) is the first priority of my work plan", affirmed the latter, who is also the National Focal Point (NFP) of the WAQSP in Ghana. It should be recalled that Ghana is one of the seven (07) countries in the region that, at the technical level, have validated the NQP prepared with the support of the WAQSP, but which are still awaiting official adoption.

Mr. Bau also met with the Ghana Industries Association (GIA), the Ghana National Chamber of Trade and Industry, the Ghana National Accreditation Service (GhaNAS), and the UNIDO Local Strengthening Program Team of Trade Capacity (TCB) and Competitiveness of West Africa (WACOMP). These meetings enabled the partners and stakeholders to be updated with regard to the activities and results achieved under the WAQSP, and to inform them of the new WACOMP projects in its regional and national components. Meetings during which there was also talk of speeding up the process of adoption of the national quality policy, of the support of the private sector to its implementation and the sustainability of the West African quality system under the umbrella of ECOWAQ, the newly created ECOWAS Quality Agency with the support of the Programme.

Overall, this circular mission allowed the Manager of the two regional Programmes: WAQSP and Competitiveness and Quality Infrastructure of West Africa (WACOMP / WACQIP), to observe the reality of the achievements on the ground in Ghana, to meet the challenges and make recommendations to stakeholders.

On the sidelines of these meetings, Mr. Bau attended part of the work of the Regional workshop on strengthening technical frameworks of National Metrology Bodies (NMB) on Calibration Guides and Harmonized Procedures for Verification of Measuring Instruments in priority quantities, organized by the Community Committee for Metrology (ECOMET) of ECOWAS, a committee set up within the framework of the WAQSP. The president of ECOMET, Mr. Paul Date, took the opportunity to update him on the status of implementation of the action plan of this committee. The PM commended the committee for its efforts and informed that his institution's support will continue through WACOMP, in which Ghana has a national component of that UNIDO, is also the technical partner. The Programmes’ Manager appealed to the forty-eight (48) members of the NMB to engage in advocacy with their respective Governments. He wished to see the States commit the means necessary for the sustainability of the system, following the efforts of the partners, particularly UNIDO and the European Union, which Mr. Bau thanked for their decisive contributions to the construction of the Regional Quality Infrastructure (RQI) already operational.

At the end of his stay, Mr. Bau said he was pleased to have found that the RQI is consolidating in the region. In his closing remarks, he invited stakeholders to continue the efforts of exchange and collaboration in order to consolidate the harmonized system of measurement and control in the ECOWAS region which allows a safe and fluid circulation of quality products and reassures the consumer; ECOWAS has no time to lose if it wants to be ready for the opening of borders, now that the Continental Free Trade Zone (CFTZ) is created.

 

This program is funded by the European Union with the technical support of UNIDO

The views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect those of the Commision of the European Union

Copyright - 2019 - ECOWAS AGENCY FOR QUALITY