On 20th April 2017, PanAfrica Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) organized a Regional Post Twenty Second Conference of Parties (COP 22) consultative workshop in Kampla, Uganda...

African CSOs and Governments urged to shift their focus from negotiation to implementations

By Jonathan Sawaya

On 20th April 2017, PanAfrica Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) organized a Regional Post Twenty Second Conference of Parties (COP 22) consultative workshop in Kampla, Uganda.  The workshop was looking at how to put into force the Paris Agreement by shifting the focus from negotiation to the implementation of the provisions of the Agreement.  It brought together Africa CSOs, Uganda government representative, Youth, UN Agencies and the Media.

COP 22 which held in Marrakech, Morocco in December 2017, focused on how to make the Paris Agreement work by setting up mechanism and structures that would facilitate its implementation. It was given the nickname of “COP of Action” which has resulted into the launch of the Marrakech Partnership for global climate action.

It has shown that some African CSOs and government still looked up in negotiation mood. Thus, the needs of bringing together African CSOs, government representatives, Youths, and the Media to discuss the need of shifting focus from negotiation to implementation of the Paris Agreement was vital.

The Regional consultative workshop was able to make participants understand the losses and gains of the Paris Agreement and reached consensus on the need of focusing on its implementation. Participants were also familiarized with initiatives of Ugandan government in addressing the impacts of climate change and how far they have gone in cascading the UNFCCC agreements and the 16th Board Meeting of the GCF its outcome and decisions.   

The workshop was officiated by Mr. Chebet Maikut Uganda’s focal person to the UNFCCC and the head of Climate Change Department in the Ministry of Environment and Water in Uganda representing Minister for Water and Environment. In his remarks Mr. Maikut shared evidence of impacts of climate variability and change in Uganda such as frequent occurrence of droughts and floods which have resulted into famine in some parts of the country specifically along the cattle corridor where youths and women have been adversely affected. “Climate change is real and many people in Uganda and across Africa are being affected” He said. According to him, the global share of greenhouse gases from Uganda is very minimal but the impacts of climate change are being felt all over the country. Mr. Maikut pointed out that in-addressing the impacts of climate variability and change, the government of Uganda has put in place a number of initiatives such National Climate Change Policy, Climate Smart Agriculture program, Green Growth Economy and ratification of the Paris Agreement to mention the few. “The government of Uganda has committed itself to mobilize internal resources while at the same time venturing in to accessing the external resources”. Lack of enough resources has been the major challenge in for most African countries and other vulnerable countries in addressing climate change. The government of Uganda has seen that and is working on making sure that we help our communities to adapt to the impact of climate variability and change. He added.    Mr. Maikut concluded by calling upon African CSOs to increase their voice in influencing the world to abide by the commitments and the pledge the have made in addressing the climate change impacts across the world.

Rebecca Muna (Executive Director, FORUMCC) urged African CSOs and governments to continue working together in putting the Paris Agreement into implementation in Africa. “Whether we like or not we have the Paris Agreement on table we should work on it. There are many losses which we have seen from African CSOs’ perspective on the Agreement but African governments and CSOs need to focus on implementation of the Paris Agreement”. Muna said.  Resource mobilization has been a challenge for vulnerable countries in addressing   climate change issues. We have seen initiatives, which have been put in place for addressing climate change issues from Ugandan government which look relatively good but without resources they can’t achieve it.  Procedures for accreditation and accessing the GCF are challenging for African government due to limited capacity.  Some countries have managed to access the GFC fund while many are still struggling. For those who have managed to access that money they should make sure that money brings transformation to vulnerable communities and the economy of the country and region.

In concluding her presentation Muna urged African CSOs to make sure they are affirmative engaging with National Designated Authorities (NDAs) and National Implementing Entities (NIEs) to surefire the projects and be the real watch dogs.  "There is a need for effective engaging and playing an active role in follow up of the GCF" Muna Said.  

 

Group photo of the participants of Regional Post COP 22 Consultative workshop