Midrand, South Africa, 18/3/2011 – Erastus Mwencha, the Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) said the AU Commission and the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NEPAD Agency) had made a lot of progress in terms of the institutional integration of NEPAD into the African Union. However, focus should now turn towards the harmonisation of programmes and projects in order to more effectively address the needs of the African people.
“We work for Africa and we have a common cause towards Africa’s development. It is this synergy that underlines NEPAD’s integration into the AU and our joint work,” he said, adding that the institutional and administrative integration of NEPAD had made a lot of progress and that attention should now be turned towards the alignment and harmonisation of joint development programmes.
Speaking at the start of a one-day working session with the senior management staff of the NEPAD Agency in Midrand, South Africa, Mwencha said “there should be close alignment between our strategies and our work programmes”.
In his welcome remarks, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NEPAD Agency, Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, said that the NEPAD Agency “was proud to be a member” of the AU family “because this has enabled us to improve our impact on development in Africa”.
“Our joint programmes whether it is the work we are doing on the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), or in infrastructure as in the shape of the Programme for Infrastructure Development of Africa (PIDA), in the areas of science and technology and/or gender, has gained a new sense of collective political will as a result of NEPAD’s integration into the AU”, said Mayaki.
The NEPAD Agency, Mayaki said, was now turning towards a phase of putting in place regular consultative processes and systems that would enable it to better coordinate and align its programmes towards those of colleagues at the AUC.
“We should also focus more on results and less on process,” continued Mwencha. “If we want to make positive changes on the ground we should be asking ourselves about those results that we can achieve in order to effect change.”
“Since the creation of NEPAD, the continent has been growing at 5%,” said Mwencha. Many people are asking about the agents behind this growth and the contribution of NEPAD in all this.”
NEPAD, Mwencha said, had contributed to “Africa’s successes over the last two decades by pushing for policy reforms, better governance and by advocating on behalf of Africa at the global level”.
Staff at the Agency welcomed Mwencha’s visit after which they provided the Deputy Chairperson with briefings on the programmes and projects that they were working on including the progress of their implementation at the national and regional economic community levels.
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About the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency
The NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NEPAD Agency) as the technical body of the African Union www.africa-union.org, works closely with the African Union Commission (AUC), regional economic communities, national governments, civil society and the private sector to push for programmes and projects that focus on improving the lives of the African people. The NEPAD Agency is the leading African development expert, able to mobilise the private sector, heads of state and African people as a force for positive change, building continental prosperity and regional integration. For more information, go to: www.nepad.org