24.05.2005 General News

Commission for Africa to meet in Algiers

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Accra, May 24, GNA - The Commission for Africa's recommendations for action to promote and accelerate growth and prosperity in Africa would be top of the agenda at a regional meeting in Algiers, Algeria, on May 28 and May 29.

The Commission for Africa (CFA), in conjunction with LEAD Francophone Africa, was organising a regional consultation meeting to consider the conclusions and recommendations of the CFA's Report, "Our Common Interest", according to a statement from the Commission's Secretariat.

The statement said the objective of regional sessions was to share the results of the CFA Report with a variety of stakeholders in Africa and to identify the actions required to ensure the adoption of the CFA recommendations by the world's developed countries - in particular the G8 at their summit meeting in Gleneagles from July 6 to July - and the next steps to turn the commitments made into concrete action. "These sessions will also consider the key role that African stakeholders must play to ensure that commitments made by the international community are honoured and delivered in full," it said. The Algiers meeting would discuss the actions required to ensure the adoption of CFA's recommendations by the G8 at its upcoming summit, and the roles and responsibilities of the international community, African Regional organisations (e.g. AU), African states and African stakeholders in the process of their implementation. It would also discuss the ways that African stakeholders could form a dynamic partnership to make a significant contribution to turning the CFA recommendations into concrete action, including their role in monitoring and evaluating the delivery of the recommendations. UK Prime Minister Tony Blair established the Commission for Africa in February 2004.

The independent commission - made up of 17 Commissioners, with the majority from Africa - was tasked to produce a coherent set of recommendations for the G8, EU and other wealthy countries as well as African countries on the steps required to accelerate progress towards a strong and prosperous Africa.

The statement said throughout its work, the CFA was conscious of the need to build on the best of existing trends and initiatives for Africa's development, notably those of the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) and the African Union (AU).

In addition, the CFA sought to enlarge the field of discussion on the priorities for Africa's development, moving beyond the traditional audiences of political elites and national and international institutions to include a wide variety of stakeholders, including representatives from civil society, academia, business and industry, science and technology, the media and local government.

The statement said to ensure that the views and aspirations of these stakeholders were reflected in its report the CFA undertook a comprehensive consultation process from May to December 2004.

This process included consultations with representatives from civil society - nogovernmental organisations, women's groups, youth groups, the disabled, rural and urban poor - in each of the five African regions as well as consultations with other groups, including business leaders. The statement said the consultation for North Africa took place in Alexandria, Egypt in December and following the release of its report the CFA had renewed its commitment to an open and inclusive consultative approach, discussing the recommendations and implications of the report with a wide variety of stakeholders.

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