AP urges a final push to achieve the MDGs
Addis Ababa, May 21, 2012 (WIC) – African Parliamentarians urged cooperative efforts to push forward to achieve the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
According to a press release sent by the UN Resident Coordinators along with its collaborators to WIC, the role of African parliamentarians in accelerating the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and in the emerging discussions about a post 2015 development agenda will take centre stage at a regional conference organized by the African Network of Parliamentarians on the MDGs and the United Nations Millennium Campaign (UNMC) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from 21 to 25 May 2012.
According to Charles Abugre, the African Regional Director for UNMC, the conference aims “to galvanize African parliamentarians to make a big push to ensure that the MDGs are achieved in the remaining time and also to ensure that members of parliaments are at the forefront of shaping the international development agenda that will succeed the MDGs after 2015, recognizing the changing global economic and governance environment.”
Mr. Abugre further stated that “the conference will attract over 150 participants from national and sub-regional parliaments, civil society, the United Nations system and other stakeholders.”
The conference is hosted by the Parliament of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Office of the Resident Coordinator of the United Nations and Resident Representative of UNDP in Ethiopia. Other partners involved in the conference are: the Commonwealth Foundation, Committee on the MDGs of the National Assembly of Nigeria, the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the African Union Commission, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the United Nations Development Programme.
“The United Nations System in Ethiopia is pleased to be hosting this important conference at a critical period in the life of the MDGs, a time when we are witnessing on the one hand, tremendous growth in the African economy and improvements in our democratic process and on the other hand, serious reversals in some aspects of human development in our societies, the joint statement pin pointed.
“We have to act now and with greater urgency if we are to move closest to achieving the MDGs. We need our parliamentarians to be in the forefront of this,” says Eugene Owusu, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative for Ethiopia.
The conference would be preceded by a General Assembly of the Network which will feature the adoption of a constitution and the approval of an annual work plan for the Network.
“The conference is a milestone for the African Network of Parliamentarians on the MDGs and for African parliamentarians in general. It underscores the recognition that parliamentarians can no more be spectators when it comes to shaping the directions of our economies and the wellbeing of our people. It is recognition that as parliamentarians, we are critical to achieving the MDGs. We need to take that responsibility seriously and there is a lot we can learn from civil society organisations,” says Honourable Alhassan Ado Garba, Chairperson of the Network.
The conference will discuss, among others the role of the state in the economy and poverty eradication, the role of parliamentarians in shaping the Post-2015 development agenda and in ensuring accountable and democratic governance.
The conference is expected to end with the celebration of African Day at the African Union Commission headquarters in Addis on May 25 2012.
The United Nations Millennium Campaign and the African Network of Parliamentarians on the MDGs appreciate “the tremendous financial and political support from the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria represented by the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on the MDGs in the hosting of this conference,” says Mr. Abugre.
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