The way the NEPAD Agency coordinates and implements its mandate at national level will be greatly enhanced, following a landmark consensus on the establishment of a Focal Points Platform.
The Platform is a set-up of key persons and institutions in AU member states and Regional Economic Communities (RECs), who will support the effective management and coordination of activities, programmes and projects. The Focal Points based in various government institutions such as National Planning, Finance, Social Development and Foreign Affairs, will be the NEPAD Agency’s entry point into countries, but also serve as key drivers of implementation plans at country and regional level.
Dubbed the Nairobi Commitment, the outcome document is a culmination of a two day robust Forum in the Kenyan Capital Nairobi, where the NEPAD Agency engaged representatives from government ministries, RECs, Civil Society, the African Development Bank and UN Agencies, on how best NEPAD can go about its business.
The Focal Points Forum was hosted by Kenya’s Ministry of Devolution and Planning, under which NEPAD Kenya falls. Speaking at the opening ceremony, Cabinet Secretary at the Ministry, Ms Anne Waiguru said that it was an important juncture for a review of progress made, identify challenges and present solutions and development direction. She stated the Kenyan Government’s commitment to the African Union and NEPAD Agenda.
Dr Mayaki flanked by Ms Anne Waiguru, NEPAD Kenya CEO Ms Omollo and a delegate from Sudan
Delegates discussed the core functions of NEPAD’s coordinating structures; how NEPAD can communicate better at national and regional level and key findings of commendations from a Mapping Exercise Report produced by two consultants. Through funding from the UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), the two consultants - Ambassador Olukorede Willoughby former NEPAD acting CEO and Mr Ibrahima Mbaye, Senegal’s former Minister in charge of NEPAD, identified the main focal points with whom NEPAD will work to map its structures, update a contacts database and provide guidelines the role of the focal points.
Ambassador Olukorede Willoughby and Minister Ibrahima Mbaye.
Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, the CEO of NEPAD saluted the visionary leadership of the Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and his cabinet, and thanked the government for hosting the Focal Points Forum. He also commended the valued partnership with UNECA which has been key to the Focal Points Forum and other development support to NEPAD. He also thanks NEPAD Kenya for organising and excellent Forum.
The Nairobi Commitment will be submitted to the Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee (HSGOC) meeting during the AU Summit in Malabo next month. In it, Dr Mayaki makes five personal commitments - among them that he will communicate systematically with RECs and national focal points, as well as ensure that the Reports presented to the HSGOC, incorporate input from the RECS and national offices.