After Ghana had successfully hosted the 2019 Climate Week at the Accra International Conference Center (AICC), by the Ministry of Environment, Science and Innovations, the National Association of Local Authorities, Ghana (NALAG) has expressed readiness to host the 2019 Climate Change Summit in October this year.
This was announced by Hon. Kokro Amankwah, General Secretary of the association Monday in Accra.
It is expected that about one thousand (1,000) non-state Actors across the length and breadth of Africa and the rest of the world to deliberate on the various parameters set in Abidjan, ahead of the UN summit this year.
Mr Kokro Amankwah in a statement reiterated NALAG’s committed to the fight in achieving the Paris Agreement of a global action plan to put the world on track to avoid dangerous climate change.
Read Full Statement Below:
PRESS STATEMENT OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF LOCAL AUTHORITIES OF GHANA (NALAG) TOWARD AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN STATES AND LOCAL AUTHORITIES FOR THE TERRITORIALISATION OF NATIONAL DETERMINED PLANS (NDCs) DURING THE AFRICA CLIMATE WEEK FROM 18TH– 22ND MARCH, 2019 AT THE ACCRA INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE CENTER (AICC)
As we meet here in Accra at the Africa Climate week, the realities of Climate Change should dawn on us. There is no way one can ignore the effects it is having on our world today. It is, for this reason, the National Association of Local Authorities of Ghana (NALAG) in partnership with ICLEI (Africa and World Secretariat) and UCLG Africa organized “A Cities and Regions Talanoa Dialogue” event funded through the Covenant of Mayors for Sub-Saharan Africa on 6thJuly, 2018.
This event brought together 26 stakeholders from local Authorities, relevant National Government Agencies as well as Civil Society Organization to deliberate on the way forward to further deepen the conversation toward an inclusive, participatory and transparent dialogue.
As we are all aware, the world came together last year to share experiences and help make wise decisions to inspire a global response to the threat of the changing climate. The UN Systems through the UNDP have supported state agencies through long term strategies to deal with climate change under the Africa Adaptation Programme (AAP).
This Programme was implemented from 2010 to 2013 to help with government’s response to climate change and natural disasters by building capacities of the NDPC, EPA, NADMO and Ghana Meteorological Agency. Through this, the NDPC has helped our District Assemblies in mainstreaming climate change and disaster risk reduction into their District Development Plans over the years and had become part of the Functional Organizational Assessment Tool which is a prerequisite for budgetary allocations to District Assemblies Development projects and programmes.
It is now evident that our District Assemblies have been implementing activities to help mitigate the effects of climate change and natural disasters for some time now through the implementation of practical climate change adaptation projects such as at construction of footbridges at key crossing points within their jurisdictions so that people can cross during flooding, construction of light industrial markets to relocate business owners in flood prone areas, construction of major drains, planting of trees and many more. Districts Assembles have taken the waste management in their cities as a priority because its effect on the environment can not be underestimated in anyway.
However, it has become necessary as a country to speed up our actions in implementing the National Determined Contributions (NDCs) in the National Adaptation Plan. This is because on yearly basis drought and flooding in parts of the country has become a yearly worry to the entire nation. Communities along the banks of the Volta Lake and the coastal towns are constantly displaced through the rising levels of water levels.
Temperatures recorded yearly keeps changing especially in the northern part of the country which has resulted in high incidents of the breakout of cerebrospinal meningitis (CSM), change in rainfall patterns which has resulted in decline in agricultural production since there is little of or no access to irrigation. These have actually affected the economic activities of farmers and fisher folks leading to adverse effect on their education, health and socio-economic activities.
Furthermore, it has become difficult for us as NALAG to know whether the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology has been monitoring the activities of our MMDAs to collect information on their actions toward implementing activities aimed at reducing climate change.
This is because NALAG has not been receiving any reports that indicates their monitoring activities and also not been engaging NALAG in any dialogues that is aimed at policy formulation and implementation at the national level. The ministry sure may be doing work on it but we can’t really ascertain since we have not been involved.
I therefore ask that, we be engaged, contacted and given feedback more often so that we can all be committed in achieving the set targets of pre-2020 which is vital for putting the world on a path towards achieving the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement.
At this forum, I would like to use this opportunity to indicate that most of our District Assemblies have prepared their Climate Change Action Plans and example is the Accra Metropolitan Assembly. We therefore need partners to come in to help with funding to enable them implement these activities that will gear towards achieving set goals at the local level which will feed into National Adaptation Plan and therefore into the Global Agenda.
Ladies and Gentlemen, I would like to state that, NALAG is truly committed to the fight to achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement for which reason we are hosting the 2019 Climate Change Summit in October this year where we are expecting about One Thousand non-state Actors across the length and breadth of Africa and the rest of the world to deliberate on the various parameters set in Abidjan, which will be our voice at the UN summit this year to review the progress made since Paris.
As once said by the former President of the United States of America, Barack Obama, “Climate change is no longer some far-off problem; it is happening here, it is happening now”.
On this note, there is the need for robust partnerships between, National and local governments, National and Local Associations, Non-state Actors to implement the set goals that will help us match towards achieving positive targets.
HON. KOKRO AMANKWAH
(GENERAL SECTRETARY, NALAG)