Poster CSO Forum 2015In an annual event to convene Civil Society Organizations, the Bank and Regional member countries, the African Development Bank will be hosting the Forum for civil society organizations (CSOs) 2015 in Abijan, Côte d’Ivoire.

The yearly forum seeks to optimize development results as well as sustain development impact with about 50 participants representing a diverse group of CSOs are expected to attend the event.Building on the momentum created by the revitalization of the AfDB-CSO Committee at the beginning of this year, the CSO Forum will discuss ways in which CSOs can provide inputs on and express their views about the Bank’s key policies and development programs. The Forum will also provide a platform for CSOs to share their experiences and reflect on issues related to equity, transparency and accountability.

Participants will have the chance to learn how AfDB is leading Africa’s position on climate change for the COP21, and how the AfDB is supporting its regional member countries with climate finance as they move into climate-smart solutions.

Last year’s annual meeting themed “The next 50 years. The Africa we want” hot topics were inclusive of Investment Africans want henceforth that included creation of new business models and international bond markets. Africa’s natural resources too was a topic of importance with the attendees citing ways to maximize blue economies across the continent as well as building wealth down from inherited to creation of own wealth.

Young Africans too had a say in the meeting with the highlighted outcry being cashing in on the demographic dividend, and also the gender dividend enterprising Africa. Oversight and accountability mechanisms important for good governance and sustainable growth and the management of MDB exposure were highlights under Governance Africans want under the hot topics.

Despite the reduction in world tariffs and improvements in market access, most African countries find it very difficult to expand trade which is why African development Bank set measure to break barriers between countries and different economies. Also in discussion was the initiatives Africans want among them being sustainable Energy for All for the period from 2014-2024.

The African economy outlook 2014 highlighted that Empowering people through investments in skills and technology needed to boost development.

This year’s Objective

The purpose of this year’s CSO Forum is to strengthen the partnership between the Bank and CSOs across Africa by providing a platform for dialogue and information exchange around the theme “Increased transparency and openness in the Bank’s policies and programs: The role of CSOs.”

The specific objectives are to:

  • Allow an open and frank conversation with CSOs about their experiences and reflect on issues related to equity, transparency and accountability.
  • Improve the understanding of the role of different stakeholder groups in setting the climate change agenda in Africa and shaping the resulting agreement.
  • Explore further entry points and outreach and communication strategies between the Bank and the CSOs.

The CSO event will take advantage of both physical and virtual media. Online video streaming will allow citizens to participate directly to the debate. Highlights of the event will simultaneously be reported through social media such as Twitter and Facebook, pictures will be posted on Flickr and Instagram, and a podcast of the event, divided by session, will be available online after the event.

The virtual audience will be able to interact with the speakers and other guests by submitting their questions/remarks through these social media.

Attending members will have the opportunity to meet with members of the Bank’s Senior Management and staff to discuss pertinent issues, and to observe the Annual Meetings Opening and Closing Ceremonies.

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