Over 200 experts, specialists, senior Government officials, community and youth representatives from 24 countries of Eastern and Southern Africa declared a call for action to secure a future for Nature, People and Future generations in Africa, at the ESARO Regional Conservation Forum (RCF) held in Johannesburg, South Africa from 23 – 25 July 2019
Over 200 experts, specialists, senior Government officials, community and youth representatives from 24 countries of Eastern and Southern Africa have declared a call for action to secure a future for Nature, People and Future generations in Africa.
The Delegates who included Ministers responsible for environment from Uganda, Rwanda and Ethiopia, gathered in Johannesburg, South Africa from 23 – 25 July 2019 for the ESARO Regional Conservation Forum (RCF).
Speaking at the RCF, the IUCN Acting Director General Dr Grethel Aguilar said: “It is an immense honour and pleasure for IUCN, its Members, Commissions and partners to gather here in South Africa to strategize on how to address the critical challenges facing life on Earth. We are standing on the edge of 2020, the environmental “super year”. Next year, the world will witness the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2020; the United Nations Biodiversity Conference; and the Paris Climate Agreement going into effect. This is the year when African voices need to be heard and the world absolutely must commit to ambitious biodiversity goals for the coming decade.”
Held under the theme ‘Securing a future for Nature, People and Future generations’, delegates shared experiences and success stories generating a common agenda to position and safeguard the regions long term conservation interests while delivering results for people and nature.
“This event is a keystone moment where diverse voices from Africa have converged to create common understanding and aspiration for which our natural resources will be governed. Sustainable development and environment protection is the responsibility of every one of us governments, non-governmental organisations, communities and private sector. This genuine partnership of like-minded organizations under the IUCN umbrella will help to further strengthen the agenda of our respective governments and further multi-lateral environment agreements,” said Hon. Vincent Biruta, Minister for Environment, Republic of Rwanda.
Hon. Mary Goretti Kitutu, Minister of State for Environment, Republic of Uganda said: “I am convinced that we have developed a raft of commitments and resolutions that will become important policy influence, technical reference and decision-making support framework for the management of our shared goals and for your individual institutional programmes. The challenge for us now is to ‘walk the talk’ and make this a useful process for improving natural resources management in the region.”
The RCF was co-hosted by the Government of South Africa through the Department of Environment Forests and Fisheries and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Regional Office of Eastern and Southern Africa.