Monday, September 29, 2014

Advocacy letter: UN Secretary General must recognise the 'Right to Know' in his Post-2015 report


His Excellency Ban Ki-moon
Secretary General of the United Nations
United Nations Headquarters
New York, NY 10017
CC: Amina J. Mohammed, Assistant Secretary General

Dear Mr. Secretary General,

We write to you as a coalition of civil society organisations committed to sustainable development, to urge you to highlight the importance of the right to information, free media, and the protection of civil society organisations’ ability to organise and engage in your upcoming stocktaking report on the Sustainable Development Goals to the General Assembly.


His Excellency Sheikh Prof. Alh. Dr. Yahya Jammeh Nasirul Deen Babili Mansa
Your Excellency, Mr. Sam Kutesa, President of the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly,
Mr. Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations,

Your Majesties,
Your Excellencies and Your Highnesses,
Distinguished Heads of State and Governments,
Distinguished Delegates,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Thanks be to the Almighty Allah for giving me another opportunity to address this global body at a time that human civilization is teetering on the brink of a major catastrophe. But before going further let me convey our warm felicitations to you Mr. President on your election to the Presidency of the 69th Session of the United Nations Assembly. While wishing you success, I would like to assure you of the support and cooperation of The Gambia during your tenure as President of the Assembly. I would also like to commend your predecessor His Expediency Mr. John William Ashe for his able stewardship as President of the General Assembly.

Mr. President, it is well known fact that injustice, iniquities, exclusion and greed ail contribute to the creation of international tensions that could lead to catastrophic consequences, conflicts, wars, death and destruction. 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Climate change threatens food security, affects crop productivity

Gambian Women in the rice field

Author: Abdou Rahman SallahExecutive DirectorBAJ Gambia

The 2011 crop failure in The Gambia was mainly attributed to Climate Change and this has greatly affect the lives of local people particularly the women farmers whose survival, school fees, health bill, feeding depends on it.

In Central River Region a provincial region in The Gambia, there are six hundred and sixty-nine villages and these communities are farming communities who were hard hit by the effects of climate change, thus warranting the government of The Gambia to declare crop failure and called on international communities for support according to a statement from the presidency.

Climate Change is one of the major challenges hampering agricultural development in Africa, especially in the West and Gambia in particular. This change in long-term weather conditions is threatening food security and according to reports local people are hungry and more people will go hungry according to media reports.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Empowering indigenous peoples is a must for sustainable rural development, says IFAD President

IFAD President Kanayo F. Nwanze

IFAD at UN World Conference roundtable on advancing indigenous peoples' rights

 Rome/New York, 23 September 2014 -- The President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) called for greater support to indigenous peoples whose economic and social empowerment is a prerequisite for the kind of sustainable development that can transform struggling rural areas in developing countries.

“Today, many of the world's indigenous peoples and communities still struggle to preserve their identity, culture, land and resources – despite the real progress they have made," IFAD President Kanayo F. Nwanze said in an address during a roundtable discussion at the United Nations World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, a high-level plenary meeting of the United Nations General Assembly. “Too often, indigenous peoples are still neglected by development efforts or vulnerable to discrimination.”

While indigenous peoples account for just 5 per cent of the world’s population – more than 370 million people – they account for 15 per cent of those living in poverty.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Kawsu Sillah appointment as a Global Youth Ambassador for A World at School

Ambassador Kawsu Sillah
Kawsu Sillah a Gambian born youth activist has been appointed as a Global Youth Ambassador for A World at School, Mansa Banko blog can report.

A World at School is global movement of young leaders working to get 57 million children into school and learning by the end of 2015 – as the world promised in Millennium Development Goal 2 (MDG 2)

“I was moved to join this call to action because my right to education has being denied and also Shazia and Kainat along with Malala Yousafzai, were shot by the Taliban for going to school in Pakistan just over a year ago. Their story, and that of so many other youth advocates I have joined forces with, inspires me to stand up for the millions of children that are kept out of school because of poverty, early marriage, child labour and different forms of discrimination,” says Sillah

Friday, September 19, 2014

New financing agreement to boost food security in Burundi

IFAD invests in rural development to create jobs for women and young people

Rome, 19 September 2014 – The government of the Republic of Burundi and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) today signed a US$1 million grant agreement for the Burundi National Programme for Food Security and Rural Development programme that will strengthen food security and rural development in the regions of Imbo and Moso.

With a total cost of $57.9 million, the programme is funded through a $30-million grant from the Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme managed by IFAD, a $20-million loan from the OPEC Fund for International Development, and a contribution from the government of Burundi. The financing agreement was signed today in Rome by Odette Kayitesi, Minister of Agriculture and Livestock of the Republic of Burundi, and by Michel Mordasini, Vice President of IFAD.

Monday, September 15, 2014

GYIN Gambia trains Nyofelleh Tabakoto Development Association on organisational mgt, others

Executive members at the meeting taking records
Global Youth Innovation Network Gambia (GYIN Gambia) under the auspices of its executive members, engages Nyofelleh Tabokoto Development Association in Kombo North, West Coast Region members on organizational management, networking and partnership, the role of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), Community Based Organisations (CSOs), and youth organisations roles and responsibilities in national development held on Thursday 18th Septmeber, 2014 at Nyofelleh village.

Speaking at the official opening ceremony of the meeting, Pa Sorry Jallow, Board Chairperson of the association spoke at length on the importance of forming an association saying that association brings unity in the family, community and even in the country.

Burkina Faso to host 5th ERERA Forum

ERERA's 5th Forum on regional electricity regulation will take place on November 13 and 14, 2014 in Ouagadougou, capital city of Burkina Faso. The Forum, like the others before it,  serves as a permanent platform for discussion aimed at regulators and all stakeholders in the electricity sector in West Africa. 

ERERA is also expecting to give the 2014 forum an international character in order to expand this sharing of knowledge and expertise to electricity sector regulators  in other parts of Africa and the world, including southern Africa, Eastern Europe and Latin America who  share the same challenges in terms of regulation and who have similar experiences  on  issue of regulatory practices.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

SEPTEMBER: Advocate of the Month- Grace Mageka

September Advocate Champion
Grace Mageka, a Kenyan African youth leader & advocate for better youth policies in Africa and moving Africa to the next level. I am very hardworking and team player, creative and innovative, confident, intelligent, competent, vibrant, dynamic, enthusiastic, self-motivated, proactive with I can/must do attitude with a sense of initiative and ready to go beyond achieving academic excellence but also to take initiatives to positively impact the society.

Purpose: To work on raising the mobilization and awareness of youth towards creating a better future for themselves where they can explode and develop their capacities.

Mission: To positively impact global challenges by engaging young people in initiative and work streams related to specific challenges they have identified.

Vision: I aspire to transform the next generation of young leaders through personal experience that build knowledge and engender better understanding of global, regional and national.

Business and human rights in Africa – first UN regional forum

ADDIS ABABA / GENEVA (10 September 2014) – Business enterprises, governments, civil society and national human rights institutions from across Africa will meet in Addis Ababa from 16 to 18 September to discuss key business and human rights challenges for the continent.

The African Regional Forum on Business and Human Rights is convened by the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights with the support of the African Union, the UN Economic Commission for Africa and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. It will bring together 250 participants.

“This meeting has no precedent in the region. It is the first time such a wide range of stakeholders will gather to openly discuss how better to ensure that human rights, business and economic development work together. It is a unique opportunity to promote national and regional action plans on business and human rights and the scaling up of responsible business practice,” said Michael K. Addo, who chairs the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Development Forum to focus on women economic empowement

VP Dr. Isatou Njie Saidy
The office of the Vice President of the Republic of The Gambia  in collaboration with partners including Community Based Organizations, Non-governmental Organizations, Civil Society Organizations, public and private sector and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to organise a 'Development Forum'.

The 10th September 2014  forum to be held at the Kairaba Beach hotel outskirt of Banjul on the theme “Closing the Gender Gap-the Realities in The Gambia.

The focus area of the daylong forum will be on Economic Empowerment of Women and specifically on Women in Agriculture. Combined with wider audience participation, a group of key stakeholders will be engaged to jointly address the key aspects which would contribute towards the achievement of a more successful and vibrant agricultural sector most especially for women, according to a media release made available to Mansa Banko blog