Thursday, 26 June 2014
The Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change meet in Malabo
Malabo, Equatorial Guinea – June 26, 2014 – H.E. Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania and Coordinator of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC) yesterday, 25th June 2014, hosted the meeting of the CAHOSCC to discuss the impacts of climate change on agriculture on the African continent.
The meeting, which took place on the margins of the 23rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of African Union Heads of State and Government at the Sipopo Conference Center in Malabo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, was attended by H.E Yoweri Museveni, President of Uganda and Ugandan first lady, H.E Janet Kataha Museveni; Chairperson of the African Union Commission, H.E. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma; ministerial delegations from CAHOSCC member states; Dr. Carlos Lopez, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa; and Commissioner of the African Union’s Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture (DREA), H.E Tumusiime Rhoda Peace.
Opening the meeting, President Kikwete said political will and good governance were imperative if effective measures were to be put in place to mitigate the adverse impacts of climate change. President Kikwete said Africa now required in excess of US$15 billion per year to combat climate change and that the figure continues to rise.
He emphasized the need to prioritize skills development, the provision of training for young people and the need for other collective solutions among African countries to increase the level of preparedness and anticipation with regards to the negative effects of climate change.
The meeting identified five key points in setting up plans for climate change in Africa namely; climate finance and technology needs, adaptation, mitigation, participation and institutional cooperation.
H.E. Dr. Dlamini-Zuma while addressing the members of CAHOSCC said, “Africa contributes less than 4 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions, and yet it will be the worst impacted by this adverse externality through more intense and more frequent extreme weather events such as floods, droughts, coastal erosion, diseases and exacerbating impacts of climate change. Additionally Africa is a region with the least capacity to deal with the challenges of adaptation which is why the issue of climate change is so alarming and calls for decisive action.”
The meeting agreed that AU Member States should intensify research if Africa is to have a chance at surviving the future implications of climate change and continue harnessing agriculture as a vehicle for food and nutrition security, economic development, job creation and decreased vulnerability.
Women empowerment was placed high on the agenda and the meeting resolved to develop a CAHOSCC Women and Gender Programme on Climate Change to engage women and gender in climate change related actions.
Commissioner Tumusiime summed up the key messages that emerged from the meeting and stressed that they would serve as a basis for follow up actions. They included: examining and adopting the High Level Work Programme on Climate Change Action in Africa, views and strategies on Africa’s engagement at the global events of the Twentieth Conference of the Parties and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, as well as areas of action in the preparation for the United Nations Secretary-General’s Climate Summit
“We stress the need for adequate means of implementation that would allow Africa the space for sustainable development”, she said.