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10 Key Facts About Samoa Agreement

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The controversial Samoa Agreement has become a topic of discussion for many Nigerians as they wonder what it entails since the news broke that Nigeria has signed. On November 15, 2023, the European Union and member states came together to sign a new partnership agreement, referred to as the Samoa Agreement.

The member states that signed the agreement are part of the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States, also known as OACPS. About 27 member states from the EU signed the agreement, along with 79 African, Caribbean, and Pacific countries.

A newspaper organization reported that the Samoa Agreement signed by the Nigerian Government contains clauses mandating Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender rights. This report was based on an opinion article by Lagos-based lawyer Sonnie Ekwowusi, who claimed the agreement systematically legalizes LGBT.

Read Also: FG faces backlash over $150bn Samoa Trade Deal with EU

However, a review of the 172-page document and EU press statements by PUNCH Online found that the agreement does not contain LGBT clauses, as claimed by the lawyer. According to the reviewed document and EU press statements, the Samoa Agreement focuses on addressing global challenges.

In a post via its official X page on June 28, 2024, the OACPS confirmed that Nigeria has joined other member states in signing the Samoa Agreement.

The post reads, “Nigeria today signed the Samoa Agreement, joining 72 fellow members of the Organisation of African, Caribbean, and Pacific States (OACPS), in a pledge to enhance OACPS-EU relations and international cooperation.

“Ambassador Obinna Chiedu Onowu represented his country in signing the Samoa Agreement at the OACPS Secretariat in Brussels. The majority of the 79 OACPS member states signed the agreement in Apia, Samoa, on November 15, 2023, which has been provisionally applied since January 1, 2024.

“The Samoa Agreement serves as a vital legal framework for cooperation between the OACPS and the European Union, with the aim of promoting sustainable development, fighting climate change and its effects, generating investment opportunities, and fostering increased collaboration among OACPS member states on the international stage.”

10 Key Points About the Samoa Agreement:

  1. Partnership Framework: The Samoa Agreement is a partnership agreement and a vital legal framework for cooperation between the EU and its member states, and members of OACPS.
  2. Signing Location: The multilateral agreement is colloquially called the ‘Samoa Agreement’ because it was signed on the Island of Samoa in Oceania during the 46th session of the ACP-EU Council of Ministers.
  3. Key Priorities: The agreement, signed by Nigeria and other members of the OACPS, is based on six key priorities to tackle main challenges in member countries over the next two decades.
  4. Nigerian Signatory: The Nigerian Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, and the European Union, Obinna Onowu, signed the agreement on behalf of the Nigerian Government at the OACPS Secretariat in Brussels on June 28, 2024.
  5. Six Priorities: The priorities include human rights, democracy and governance; peace and security; human and social development; inclusive, sustainable economic growth and development; environmental sustainability and climate change; and mobility/migration.
  6. Decision-Making Principle: An important principle of the agreement is that “the Parties shall make decisions and undertake actions at the most appropriate domestic, regional, or multi-country level.”
  7. No LGBT Clauses: The agreement does not contain any clauses related to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer rights.
  8. EU and OACPS Members: The EU and all its member states signed the agreement on November 15, 2023. Out of the 79 members of the OACPS, 74, including Nigeria, signed before the deadline of June 30, 2024.
  9. Development Cooperation: The Samoa Agreement is a significant instrument for Nigeria’s development cooperation with the EU beyond aid. The OACPS–EU Partnership is one of the most diverse and multifaceted development pacts in the international system.
  10. Ratification Process: The agreement is to be ratified after due consideration and approval by the Federal Executive Council, National Economic Council, and the National Assembly.

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