BCEAO releases $ 6 billion for West African economies

The BCEAO has just made a liquidity injection of 3350 billion FCFA ($ 6 billion) at a fixed rate of 2% in favor of several banks of the UMOA. A total of 87 financial institutions participated in the operation. The Central Bank of West African States (BCEAO) made a further injection of liquidity to its member countries last week. In total, 3350 billion FCFA ($ 6 billion) were disbursed by the institution.

During the auction on September 14, 87 banks in the sub-region obtained an injection of liquidity at a fixed rate of 2%. With more than 1000 billion FCFA ($ 1.8 billion), it is the Ivory Coast which obtained the most important financing, ie 31% of the funds injected.

It is followed by Senegal with more than 580 billion FCFA ($ 1 billion), Mali with 466 billion FCFA (835 million $), Benin with 434.5 billion FCFA (777 million $) and Burkina Faso with 318 billion FCFA. ($ 569 million). Niger with 241.6 billion FCFA ($ 432 million), Togo with 219 billion FCFA (…

a long 32-page circular sent to the various actors in the French justice system

The deconfinement of the courts will begin with a transitional period of three weeks maximum, during which only priority judicial activity will be carried out, while the courts will put in place the drastic sanitary conditions intended to allow the resumption of justice after this period.

a long 32-page circular sent to the various actors in the French justice system

The minister's recommendations largely echo those of the note released last week by the director of judicial services, and concern both the material conditions of reception in the courts and the organization of services.

Physical distance everywhere, masks when this is not possible

The priority, for this deconfinement of justice, will be to set up and respect a good physical distance and to apply barrier gestures. Masks must be used whenever physical distancing measures cannot be applied, in the often cramped offices of the courts, in particular. For litigants, wearing a mask is recommended. It can be made compulsory in spaces where physical distance cannot be respected.

Four masks for the general public, washable 20 times, will be given to all magistrates and court staff, assistant lawyers, specialist assistants, court auditors, trainee directors and clerks, present in courts and tribunals. An endowment - not specified - of disposable masks will also be placed at the disposal of honorary magistrates, magistrates who exercise on a temporary basis, consular judges, industrial tribunal advisers, assessors, jury members, prosecutors' delegates , conciliators, assistants and other temporary staff and all the persons whose presence at the hearings is necessary.

It is also specified that the court may, in exceptional circumstances, make masks available to litigants when physical distance cannot be respected, in order to avoid the postponement of a hearing for health reasons.


Increased use of videoconferencing, public hearings prohibited

For the rest, the courts will have to organize themselves so that the courtrooms are large enough to accommodate the necessary people in compliance with this famous physical distancing, and frequent disinfection of these places. As far as possible, the doors should be left open - when this is made possible with regard to the security or confidentiality of exchanges. Above all, it will be necessary to "encourage an increased use of videoconferencing", indicates the Keeper of the Seals.

The public will no longer be able to attend the hearings, as was the case before the Covid-19 epidemic. Only persons who have a connection with the current case will be admitted, whether they are a party to the hearing or the legal representative of a party, a witness called, or of course, a lawyer defending one of the parties. The technicians and interpreters required to hold the hearings will also be admitted. Journalists will have access to the courtrooms for trials that do not take place in camera.

"Except in special circumstances and with authorization, other people will not be able to access jurisdiction", indicates the circular from the Minister of Justice. Each jurisdiction may take measures to limit access, or reduce the time slots in which hearings take place. Ground markings will have to be deployed to help respect physical distance.

Hydro-alcoholic solutions, individual or disinfected pen

The very process of the trials will take place in an unprecedented health context. In addition to the possible masks in the event of lack of space, "hydro-alcoholic solutions will be made available to the president, the assessors, the representative of the parquet floor, the clerk, and if necessary the bailiff, as well as to any person or lawyer who may have to exchange or receive documents during the hearing ", specifies the circular. Individuals, including litigants, should preferably use a personal pen. Otherwise, you will need to clean the pen and any equipment that has to go from hand to hand. The presiding officer must ensure that the physical distance in the room is respected.

The provisions are the same for the seats, where the rooms must allow the jury to follow the debates with sufficient physical distance. "If a juror nevertheless wishes to wear a mask, there is no reason to oppose this wearing," said the circular.



Separation of traffic flows

Courts will have to set up a separation of traffic flows, to avoid as much as possible people crossing. The circular thus speaks of a "tightness of the circuit of the persons referred or presented under escort, as well as the waiting areas of the detainees", to avoid, for example, that detainees coming from different remand centers, mix , as is the case today in many jurisdictions.

Telecommuting

Like other industries, the justice sector will face the difficult issue of return to work for its agents who have children or for those who are considered vulnerable to Covid-19.

Vulnerable people - including those over the age of 65 - will be invited to telecommute or will be placed on special leave of absence. They may nevertheless go there on a voluntary basis.

Officers with a loved one who is vulnerable to Covid-19 will be placed on telework or, failing that, on special leave of absence, unless their presence is deemed necessary by their manager. In this case, sufficient protective measures, including the wearing of a mask, must be ensured.

Possible absences to babysit

It has already been agreed that the reopening of nurseries and schools - when it takes place - will be very partial and very gradual. Some agents may also prefer, like many French people, to keep their children at home. The issue of officers who are considered vulnerable people is also addressed in the ministry's circular.

In cases where the staff member's children cannot be taken in by schools at the usual rate, or if the staff member decides to keep their children at home, a special leave of absence may be granted, at the rate of '' one agent per household. But this will not apply to those who will have a possibility of childcare: if the spouse is on sick leave, partial unemployment, or even telecommuting and that this is compatible with childcare, the agent will have to come to work. In any case, the officers concerned will have to complete an honor certificate.



Work near home or on shift schedules

To avoid the great difficulties that lie ahead in transport, here again the use of telework is preferred. But another solution could be put in place, to the extent possible and in an exceptional way: allowing an agent to go to work in a court or premises closer to his home, while remaining attached to his superior and its original jurisdiction.

The possibility of taking certain files home will also be granted, but should pose some security problems. The files taken out of court, and from which they do not usually leave, will be the responsibility of the agents who take them home.

Finally, the Ministry of Justice plans to set up shift schedules, in the morning and in the evening, and to make work possible on Saturdays, on a voluntary basis, and without changing the weekly working hours. A rotation of the workforce is also suggested, for a fair distribution between the telework situation and the presence in court. In other words, so that it’s not always the same people who go to court, and vice versa.