‘Outcome of Third FfD promising’ – Akologo
THE Executive Secretary of the Department of Human Development at the National Catholic Secretariat, Mr. Samuel Zan Akologo, has described the outcome of the Third Financing for Development (FfD) Document (Addis Ababa Action Agenda) as a promising document with gains and losses.
He argued that the 134 point document captured key issues including human dignity, migration, decent work, environment and climate change as well as protection of family and sustainable consumption and production, but expressed disappointment that the document lacks recognition for women’s right to development.
“It instead acknowledges the utilitarian purpose of women’s participation in development,” he added.
Mr Akologo was speaking in an interview on the prospects of the recent Third FfD Conference at Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, where he represented Caritas Internationlis at the crucial meeting.
The Conference brought together International Finance Institutions including the African Development Bank, the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), Asia Development Bank, as well as the Member States of the United Nations, Civil Society Organisations and Caritas Internationalis with its affiliates, and other stakeholders to discuss the funding mechanism of the Sustainable Development Agenda (SDGs).
Mr. Akologo touching on the document, said although some of the losses were disappointing, he was not despondent because there was still a window to raise some of the systemic issues before the adoption of the Post-2015 Development Agenda by Heads of States in September at the UN General Assembly.
The FfD, largely described as a critical Conference, was the major meeting place that discusses funding mechanism for Post-2015 Development Agenda, with regards to Overseas Development Assistance (ODA), which financial analyst estimated to cost trillions of dollars.
“From the African perspectives the Outcome Document recognises endogeneous African initiatives like Africa Agenda 2063 and acknowledges concerns on Illicit Financial Flows (IFF)” Mr. Akologo stated.
He however noted that the commitment in the Document to set up a Global Tax Body to regulate tax obligations to stem the IFF which was costing Africa to lose thrice the amount of Donor funds pumped into development projects was disappointing.
In a statement at the Conference, Archbishop Bernardito Auza, Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the UN, called on world leaders and all stakeholders to embrace transformative shift to translate the declarations in the AAAA Document into actions, and commitments into achievements.
He reminded them of their “responsibility to ensure that the commitments made at Addis Ababa meet our overreaching goal to end poverty and hunger and to ensure sustainable, equitable, and integral development that leaves no country and no one behind.”
The Archbishop, who welcomed the attention given to an effective monitoring and follow up mechanism on the implementation of the FfD Outcome Document, called for a supportive international economic environment to support development strategies in the spirit of global partnership, shared prosperity and intergenerational solidarity.
Similarly, in a congratulatory statement issued by his spokesperson, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon commended countries on the adoption of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda, calling it a “major step forward in building a world of prosperity and dignity for all.”
He said the landmark agreement reached after months of intense negotiations, revitalizes the global partnership for development and “establishes a strong foundation” for the new SDGs, which is set to be adopted in September in New York.
In a release in April, heads of six International Financial Institutions (IFIs) from all the continents, in showing their support to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), however acknowledged that the resources required to implement such an ambitious agenda far surpass current development financial flows.
To “achieve the SDGs will require moving from billions to trillions in resource flows,” the release noted, adding that such a paradigm shift calls for a wide-ranging financing framework capable of channeling resources and investments of all kinds both public and private, national and global.
Since the adoption of the Millennium Development Goals in 2000, the Monterrey Consensus in 2002 and the Doha Declaration in 2008, the July 2015 Addis Ababa Action Agenda or the Third Financing for Development Conference was seen by many analysts as a critical point to help in resource mobilsation to meet the funding gap required for the implementation of the SDGs, which aims at overcoming poverty and protecting the planet, with emphasis on issues of the environment, employment, infrastructure, and inclusion and inequality.
According to some development analyst, the AAAA Outcome Document openly points the way for all stakeholders to keenly invest in people to end poverty and to protect our planet, while ensuring a strengthened follow-up process on progress on implementation gaps at the global level and recommendation for corrective action, with respect to national and regional dimensions.