Bujumbura, March 25, 2014 (DWG) : Friday, March 21, 2014, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of External Relations and International Cooperation, Ambassador Albert SHINGIRO granted an audience to Dr. Dany Dogmo Pokem, CBFP Communications Officer in PFBC (Partnership for forests of the Congo Basin) flanked by Mr Felix Ngendabanyikwa, the Burundian Director of Forests.

After the usual greetings, Mr. Dany Dogmo Pokem proceeded to present an overview of the CBFP’s activities. He announced that the programme he had presented was developed in 2002 at the World Sustainable Development Summit held in Johannesburg. He described it as a voluntary multi-stakeholder initiative aimed at intensifying dialogue and cooperation at regional level. Members of the partnership act to ensure implementation of measures to protect the region’s biodiversity, foster good forest governance, and improve living conditions in the region.

He pointed out that CBFP’s activities include training, workshops, working groups and information sharing. Dr Dogmo Pokem announced that his visit was intended to assess progress in preparations ahead of the COMIFAC Council of Ministers slated for November 2014. It is important to note here that the COMIFAC is one of CBFP’s partners. He also requested Burundi to give notice of its decision with respect to the upcoming Presidency of COMIFAC, which would normally fall to Burundi. Dr Dogmo Poken did not omit to acknowledge the Member States’ contributions to the smooth functioning of the Commission.

Ambassador Albert SHINGIRO thanked him for the information provided and stated that the Burundian Government places great value on environmental and climate change issues. He noted that in recent times, floods had caused great damage and casualties in the country and that the phenomenon of climate change was seriously impacting agriculture, livestock and habitat. He underscored that forest and environmental protection had been mainstreamed into the Government's priorities as set out in the CSLPII.

Speaking of the Member States’ contributions, he expressed the wish that contributions would be varied according to country as they do not all have equal financial standing. With respect to preparations for the upcoming ministerial meeting, he said that Burundi would make adequate arrangements to ensure a successful meeting. The Permanent Secretary concluded by saying that Burundi would officially announce its candidacy for the COMIFAC Presidency.

Communication and Information Department 


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