Président de la Commission de l’Union Africaine (depuis le 1er. février 2008)
20-23 May, Delegation from the United Nations Office of the Special Advisor on Africa to visit the NEPAD Secretariat, Midrand, South Africa.
20-23 May, AU-NEPAD food and nutrition security workshop, Centurion, South Africa. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
The next NEPAD TV programmes on the SABC Africa channel (DSTV Channel 407) are :
21 May, 8pm-9pm (SA time)
The topic of the phone-in panel discussion is the African Union/NEPAD food and nutrition security workshop being held in Centurion, South Africa from 20-23 May 2008. Main talking points at the workshop are the implementation of the NEPAD Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) and the need to accelerate country investments in agriculture in response to high food prices and food insecurity.
The panel (still to be finalised) will include delegates to the workshop from all parts of Africa.
* Note : the SABC Africa channel on DSTV moved from channel 267 to new channel 407 on 1 May 2008. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
More disbursements from the NEPAD-Spanish Fund for the Empowerment of Women have been approved during 12-16 May 2008 to add to the first list signed on 9 May.
While the Finance Manager at the NEPAD Secretariat is in the process of liaising with the various banks involved it has been noted that a number organisations awaiting funds have provided banking details that are either incorrect or incomplete.
At this stage those organisations whose bank details are incomplete have been asked to submit the missing information and must do so speedily to avoid any delays in disbursement. Beneficiaries have been requested to acknowledge receipt of funding.
Once again, the NEPAD Secretariat urges all organisations who submitted incomplete applications to provide the required information as soon as possible.
The NEPAD Secretariat thanks all the organisations for their co-operation. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
Members of the Pan African Parliament, sitting in Midrand, South Africa, briefly suspended their deliberations to celebrate the unique African Millennium of Ethiopia.
The President of the Parliament, Dr. Gerttrude Mongella, together with Ambassador Mohamout Dirir, the Minister of Culture and Tourism, cut a red ribbon to mark the millennium, which comes seven years after that of the rest of the world because of Ethiopia’s unique measuring of time.
The President, the Ambassador and Members of Parliament were given the opportunity to taste Ethiopian food and join in the coffee ceremony which is an integral part of Ethiopian social and cultural life.
Jacqueline Hindjou reports that, speaking to journalists, Dr. Mongella said the Ethiopian Millennium celebration was important to Africa because it was aimed at rediscovering Africa’s own culture.
Activities for the celebration included an exhibition showcasing Ethiopian products and its various cultures as well as a gala dinner.
Ethiopia is one of the oldest civilisations in the world and has a long recorded history. In addition to its calendar, Ethiopia has its own number system and alphabet and has never been colonised.
Mabatho Motanyane reports that Elisabeth Chitika Molobeka, MP for Zambia said in an interview that it was important for Africans to appreciate their rich heritage.
She said Africans should learn to celebrate their own diverse culture as it was their own identitiy that needed to be passed on to future generations. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
NEPAD Coordinator for External Relations and Partnership, Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, refuted the perception of some Africans that the organisation was meant to cater only for the needs of the five founding countries — Algeria, Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt and Senegal.
He told African journalists during a familiarisation tour of the NEPAD Secretariat headquarters in Midrand, South Africa, on 13 May 2008, that NEPAD catered for the entire continent.
He stressed that much had been expected from NEPAD within a short time and said that Africans should unite to move the institution to greater heights.
NEPAD aimed at creating conditions for sustainable development, identifying priorities such as agriculture, health, education and infrastructure, and mobilising resources for the implementation of these projects, he said.
The journalists — from Liberia, Gambia, Tunisia, Namibia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania, Lesotho and Ghana – were then briefed on various NEPAD activities.
Some of them had this to say about their experience at NEPAD :
“The briefing by NEPAD managers on the various activities has broadened my vision of NEPAD, because I thought it only assisted the founding members” — Sanabou, Gambia.
“NEPAD is building on the capacities of regional African bodies such as SADC, ECOWAS and COMESA and is doing a good job. However, I would recommend that it improves its publicity capacity to expose its activities more” — Zezay, Liberia.
“NEPAD is doing a good job in assisting Africa. I am most impressed by the school feeding project. Now many children especially in the rural areas and poor communities will be able to go to school on a full stomach” — Nana, Ghana.
“I have discover a lot of new information about NEPAD. I too thought NEPAD was for the five founding countries. All countries have been integrated into the programmes so that they can be assisted by NEPAD” — Mmbatho, Lesotho.
* The journalists are on a training programme at the ninth ordinary session of the Pan-African Parliament sponsored by NEPAD in conjunction with GTZ, the German Technical Cooperation Agency. Reports in this newsletter from the Pan-African Parliament were compiled by journalists from the training programme. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
The NEPAD Secretariat has just played host to a group of 15 South African diplomats, who are being posted as counsellors to diplomatic and consular missions in Rome, Brussels, Moscow, Washington DC, Paris, Kuala Lumpur, Berlin, Mbabane, Lusaka and Bamako.
The group was received by : Gengezi Mgidlana, Special Advisor to the Office of the Chief Executive ; Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, Special Advisor on Partnerships and External Relations ; and Thaninga Shope-Linney, General Manager Communications and Outreach.
The NEPAD Secretariat provided an update on the status of the implementation of the NEPAD programme as well as the integration of NEPAD into the structures and processes of the African Union.
Various presentations were also made by NEPAD advisors on the various NEPAD priority sectors.
The diplomats are part of a programme provided by the South African Department of Foreign Affairs which is delivered through the Diplomatic Academy, formerly the Foreign Service Institute (FSI).
The course is designed to provide counsellors — the level of South African diplomats who support ambassadors and manage sections in the missions — with insights into topical, current and specialised areas of South Africa’s foreign policy in particular, and those issues impacting on foreign policy in general. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
NEPAD held its first tourism conference in Durban, South Africa, on 12 May 2008, and heard presentations from Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Mali, Rwanda, Nigeria and South Africa on the status of tourism in their individual countries and on the continent.
After welcoming Tanzania’s Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, Shamsa Selengia Mwangunga, the conference discussed ways in which tourism could be promoted at a national and continental level.
All role players were urged to meet their responsibilities in tourism as one of the vehicles through which Africans can address some of the challenges facing the continent.
All the participating countries agreed to the adoption of the following recommendations :
To work within the framework of the NEPAD Tourism Action Plan to address the challenges facing the continent ; To work collectively to promote national and cross-border tourism projects and initiatives ; To ensure that tourism in Africa becomes affordable and accessible to Africans ; To promote regional coordination of tourism activities and maximise the benefits of the strong inter-regional demand for tourism activities by developing specialised consumer-targeted campaigns ; To market tourism products in specific areas such as adventure tourism and eco-tourism ; To relax visa and similar requirements for tourists ; To address the issue of capacity gaps by utilising existing centres of excellence in the tourism sector in Africa ; To create a regulatory framework to enable a free flow of tourism ; To utilise Africa’s tourism potential before, during and after the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. It was also agreed that African Ministers of Tourism, Ministers of Culture, Arts and so on should be invited to provide leadership in subsequent NEPAD tourism conferences that will also include the public and private sectors and other relevant stakeholders.
The conference in future will be named the NEPAD annual tourism conference. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008
There is a need for African governments to come up with sound agricultural policies to address the food crisis in Africa. This was the general theme of comments made by Parliamentarians at the ninth ordinary session of Pan African parliament in Midrand, South Africa, during a debate on the food crisis in Africa, reports Jacqueline Hindjou.
The parliamentarians said that the problem could only be addressed by Africans themselves. Some argued that production in the region was greatly hampered by conflicts and the absence of peace and stability. They also emphasised the need to subsidise farmers and the need for laboratories to conduct research on how Africa can increase food production.
A Zambian MP, Maynard Misapa, said governments should introduce agriculture as a compulsory subject in school.
A Botswana parliamentarian, Master Goya, said African countries should cease to rely of food aid. Moussa Cisse from Senegal told the house it was imperative for Africa to research the root courses of the food crisis and how each member state could address this challenge.
Sainabou Kujabi reports that the acting chairperson of the committee on agriculture, rural economy, natural resources and environment, Athumani Mwinshee Danguo, said that more than 50 percent of the food crises in Africa could be attributed to internal and cross-border conflicts with the consequent of displacement of millions of people.
In presenting his committee’s report on food crises in Africa, he attributed the causes of famine and hunger in Africa to extended droughts and the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Inappropriate government agricultural policies were also a major contributing factor to the food crises, he said, because many governments neglected agriculture in favour of trade and industry.
Poverty, outdated farming methods, changes in climate condition, land exhaustion, over- grazing and poor infrastructure were other issues highlighted by the report.
Nana Agyeman Birikorang reports that according to Izzedine Abdelmadjid, from Algeria, the current food crisis facing Africa was different from past problems. “It is a global crisis affecting all agricultural produce as well having an effect on social progress, human rights, peace and security. That is why it needs to be managed correctly and urgently”.
An MP from Sierra Leone, Moses Sesay, said the problem with the food crisis was that it had been addressed sporadically and there had never been any effort in any part of Africa to look at the problem collectively.
He suggested that every Member of Parliament should go back to his or her country and help to promote farming in the various regions to make sure enough food was produced to feed the people. Source : NEPAD - may 16, 2008