The CBFP and COMIFAC build synergies, gear up for upcoming meetings.
22 October 2020, Yaoundé: The CBFP Facilitation team headed by the CBFP Facilitator of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Honourable Dr Christian Ruck visited the COMIFAC executive secretariat in Yaoundé, for a discussion and work meeting.
Participants from the COMIFAC side included: COMIFAC Executive Secretary, Mr. Raymond NDOMBA NGOYE; the Deputy Executive Secretary of COMIFAC, Mr. Cosmas EKANE NZUOBONTANE and COMIFAC Biodiversity Expert, Mr. Chouaïbou Nchoutpouen.
From the CBFP side: the CBFP Facilitator of the Federal Republic of Germany, Honourable Dr Christian Ruck and CBFP Co-Facilitator, H.E. Mbitikon Raymond.
Moderated by COMIFAC Executive Secretary, Mr. Raymond NDOMBA NGOYE, the discussions focused mainly on:
Both partners’ activities,
The organization of the 8th CBFP Council Meeting in Kinshasa in December 2020,
Preparations for the third COMIFAC Heads of State Summit.
The Congo Basin’s participation in major Climate, Environment and Biodiversity Summits in 2021.
Both partners’ activities
In his opening remarks, the COMIFAC Executive Secretary presented COMIFAC’s achievements and underscored the impact of COVID 19 on the continued implementation of its action plan.
The CBFP Facilitator also commented on the negative impact of COVID 19 which had hampered the Facilitation’s planning and performance, notably the holding of CBFP meetings and monitoring of implementation of the N’djamena Roadmap. He stressed the Facilitation’s determination to move forward with its activities with the upcoming 8th CBFP Council due to hold in Kinshasa in December 2020. The Facilitator announced his approval of the Civil Society’s desire to organize a Civil Society Day during the 8th CBFP Council.
The holding of the 8th CBFP Council in Kinshasa in December 2020
With the current global pandemic that has brought global activities to a halt, organizing the 8th CBFP Board of Directors is a challenge. The Facilitation underscored its aim to hammer out a joint declaration from the Congo Basin by the end of the Kinshasa come-together. Steps are being taken to ensure the success of the meeting. A draft version of this declaration was prepared based on a summary of responses collected from a survey sent to CBFP members.
COMIFAC stressed the need for better planning and coordination with the host country on practical and logistical aspects of the meeting, especially those relating to visa procedures and security measures to ensure the safety of participants, before, during and after the CBFP Council and side events.
Preparations for the third COMIFAC Heads of State Summit
Dr Christian Ruck mentioned his audience with H.E. Mr. Jules Doret Ndongo, Minister of Forests and Wildlife of Cameroon and Acting President of COMIFAC. Given that the date and venue of this much anticipated meeting are yet to be determined, arrangements are being made for it to take place.
As for COMIFAC, the agenda for its Heads of State summit has already been adopted. It needs to be updated and validated by the Council of Ministers. A small working group dedicated to the conceptualization of the summit regularly meets online.
The group is expected to present its results soon in order to get the parties concerned more involved and distribute tasks to ensure the success of this high-profile meeting.
The Congo Basin’s participation in major Climate, Environment and Biodiversity summits in 2021.
2021 will be the year of important and crucial meetings, including COP 26 in November 2021 in Glasgow, a biodiversity summit in Marseille in January 2021. The Facilitator underscored the need for the Congo Basin to speak with only one voice at these meetings through a common declaration from the Congo Basin.
The declaration must be supported by reliable and quantified data highlighting the role the world’s second lung plays in regulating the climate, so that the Congo Basin can receive fair compensation commensurate with its conservation efforts.
Other matters discussed
Other topics discussed notably included continued dialogue with China, COMIFAC’s involvement in the implementation of the Ndjamena roadmap, the revamping of COMIFAC institutions, the establishment of a body accredited to the Congo Basin financing mechanisms and the CAFI initiative which presents an opportunity for the Congo Basin. It was also noted that there was a need for COMIFAC experts to attend CAFI coordination meetings in order to stay abreast of ongoing studies in the Congo Basin.
COMIFAC approved all the initiatives initiated by the CBFP and requested the CBFP Facilitation’s mediation in support of its activities.
The meeting ended with, among other things, the announcement of Angola’s upcoming addition as the 11th member country of COMIFAC and 120th member of the CBFP.
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