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At the end of the 2013 Churches' Week for Action on Food and Nutrition, the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance decleared FECCIWA as the 'champion seed defender in Africa'.

The Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in West Africa (FECCIWA) and the Gambia Christian Council (GCC), from 13-17 October 2013, FECCIWA and GCC joined in Banjul, the Gambia, to celebrate the global Churches’ Week of Action on Food. Throughout the week-long event, Churches in West Africa spoke about Seeds for Life in local congregations through sermons, theological reflection and prayer. Public debates were also held with decision makers in order to plant seeds of change and advocate for just and sustainable food systems in West Africa.“Foreign seeds and high amounts of pesticides and fertilizers may increase yields for a few years, but they deplete our soils” explained Reverend Dr. Tolbert Jallah, Secretary General of FECCIWA. “As we lack control mechanisms, costs for people and the environment are unavoidably rising. Consumers are at risks and we endanger the whole sensible balance of our food systems.” Events and debates highlighted that access to and control over natural resources, including seeds, is an essential aspect of supporting small-scale food producers, maintaining the health of our soils, safeguarding biodiversity and, ultimately, addressing hunger. “Churches are of the conviction that if indigenous seeds are not protected, and that farmers do not have access to their own seeds, their primary income is at risk,” said Reverend Jallah. “This will eventually undermine local food production and increase extreme poverty and hunger worldwide.”


FECCIWA and the Churches call out for an integrated vision for agriculture and food security in West Africa

On September 27th, ECOWAS in context of the Meeting of the Agriculture, Environment, Water Resources Specialized Ministerial Committee, officially launched the Regional Agriculture and Food Agency. On this occasion FECCIWA conceived and distributed a position paper voicing out churches’ major concerns related to today’s challenges in developing agriculture and at the same time increasing food security in West Africa. FECCIWA warned of the dangers associated with the intensification and commercialization agenda and highlighted the need to sustainable access to means of production and markets for vulnerable populations. “West African Church Leaders are concerned that African governments, following international calls for further globalization, prioritize public spending in large scale industrial farming. One example being the capital intensive partnership agreements of the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, between G8 countries and six West African states (Cote d’Ivoire, Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana Nigeria, Senegal), which emphasize the promotion of public-private partnerships (PPPs) between local investors and multinational chemical and food industries. Instead of reversing the chronic under-investment in smallholder agriculture, these initiatives suggest the adoption of corporate agriculture - either turning smallholder farmers into wage workers or putting them into competition with large scale production schemes. In many parts of West Africa, local populations and ecosystems are today put at risk, as the interests of large scale investors stand against their needs. International investors apply high pressure to adjust national policies and legislations in favor of their needs.”


EN : Message from the Churches in West Africa: Churches call out for an integrated vision for agriculture and food security in West Africa

FR: Message des Eglises en Afrique de l'Ouest: Les Eglises appellent à une vision intégrée pour l’agriculture et la sécurité alimentaire en Afrique de l'Ouest





West African Churches criticize the compromise agreement reached for fast track conclusion of negotiations of Regional Economic Partnership Agreement (EPAs) between the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the European Commission (EC). They call on national governments to not secure national legal frameworks from parliament.

Rev. Dr. Tolbert Thomas Jallah, Jr., Secretary General of the Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in West Africa (FECCIWA) welcomes that agricultural products seem to be almost entirely left out of the liberalization process. He acknowledges: “This is a major achievement from ten years of struggle by West African civil society organizations and farmers’ networks. The importance of these products for rural economies and food security in the region has finally been approved”.

However, Rev. Dr. Jallah emphasizes, “This is not enough! There is a high degree of skepticism that the present agreement brings to the minds of faith leaders in West Africa! Africa has the right to proper industrial development and to profit from technical progress. But this Agreement has exposed West African countries to dangers in safeguarding infant industries and sensitive manufacturing products. It will seal in our eternal dependency on imports in manufactured and processed goods. We will stay cursed by these powerful industrialized nations for not being able to build our own domestic industry for raw-materials processing”.


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Social justice for the hungry



The promotion of social justice for the hungry and poor people in West Africa was very much on my mind when I arrived in Abuja, Nigeria with 25 senior church leaders from 11 of the 13 member countries of the Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in West Africa.

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Prayer of the Month

Generous Giver of good gifts, Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,

We thank you for the land, water and air and for all the good things you give us graciously.

We rely on you for our daily bread. Forgive our forgetfulness of your way, help us to use your gifts wisely and teach us the values of restraint, simplicity and patience.

We ask you this in the name of your son Jesus Christ.


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