The movement of people across African borders has become a significant element of regional integration efforts throughout the continent. Consequently, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has adopted a number of programmes aimed at facilitating the free movement of community citizens. Among these is the Protocol on Free Movement, Residence and Establishment, its supplementary protocols and free movement initiatives. In the year 2000, the West African community through the ECOWAS introduced a common passport. The passport was established and adopted as one of the numerous initiatives formulated under the organisation for the purposes of facilitating the movement of people within the sub-region. Although the ECOWAS passport has been celebrated for being the first fully functional common passport in Africa, the travel document’s contribution towards the realization of the free movement of people aspiration has been limited. The principle objective of the study is to examine the effectiveness of the common passport in attaining the intended goal of improving mobility. Subsequently, the study provides a reflection on some of the challenges that persist against the successful use of the passport. The study demonstrates how the socio-economic and political conditions present in member states continue to affect the effectiveness of the common passport.
Mini Dissertation (MA)--University of Pretoria, 2018.