Wednesday, March 4, 2015

What Mwangi Waituru told African & Japanese Civil Society Summit

TWS||Nick Waigwa

The Africa Policy and Advocacy Advisor (Post-2015) & Beyond 2015 Kenya Lead,  last month gave a powerful presentation at a Summit in Kampala, Uganda which brought together African and Japanese civil society to strategize on joint advocacy work around TICAD VI (The 6th Tokyo International Conference on African Development), which is scheduled to take place in Africa in 2016.

In his presentation on 11 February 2015, Mwangi Waituru a former Secretary General and founding member of the TICAD Civic Commission for Africa observed that the geopolitical landscape in which (TICAD) operates in today has significantly changed from a singular economic & political PowerPoint to a multipolar one with Africa emerging as a powerhouse in global politics.

Waituru urged for a universal contribution applying to Africa and Japan in equal measure considering that TICAD currently presents a very different opportunity towards development in Africa and to the relationship between Africa & Japan.

He pointed out that TICAD’s value contribution to development must be based on the Post 2015 development agenda, which focuses on eradicating poverty and delivering sustainable development. 

“ This does not mean that we have a one size fit all agenda but simply put; a transformation is both in Japan and in Benin for the people of Japan and the People of Benin to enjoy a life free from poverty in a sustainable environment.” Waituru
Waituru advised TICAD & CCfA to exercise flexibility and be strategic, swift and clear while coming up with strategy & policy document as he emphasized the need for fine-tuning of the policy document for the sake of aligning it with what is currently happening elsewhere in the world.

Among the policy development processes that Waituru drew to the attention of TICAD and CCfA representatives include; the ongoing Inter-Governmental negotiations for a post 2015 development blueprint, which has entered the home stretch and the Financing for Development process whose draft elements paper has already been developed.
He called on CCfA to influence the Japan mission in NY and the TICAD process to help inform the discussions around the means of implementation and strongly make a case for people participation in delivering development.

Citing a participatory research with marginalized groups conducted by Participate Mwangi underscored the importance of people’s participation saying people living in poverty are not mere recipients of development but active agents of change.

As one of the first international conferences directly focusing on Africa’s development after the approval of Post-2015 Development Agenda and the outcomes of COP 21, the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VI) is expected to create an important momentum for the implementation of the Post-2015 development agenda (SDGs)


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