UN Headquarters, New York, 11-15 July 2022 – The African Peer Review Mechanism took part in the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) at the United Nations to support African efforts in enhancing monitoring and evaluation of Agenda 2030 and Agenda 2063 as designated by the AU Assembly decision since 2017. The HLPF is the international mechanism to track the implementation of Sustainable Development goals (SDGs) as countries are encouraged to submit Voluntary National Report (VNR) on progress towards certain SDGs ever year.
Throughout the ministerial segment of the forum, the APRM organised different activities including the APRM Side event: “enhancing evidence- based Assessment of SDG and Agenda 2063: Africa We Want’’ in partnership with the AU Mission to the United Nations. The side event provided an informative exposé on progress made with regards to Agenda 2063 and SDGs as well as the African Union’s efforts at boosting evidence-based reporting, and statistical capabilities for both agendas.
H.E Dr. Monique Nsanzabaganwa Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission provided opening remarks at the session and commended the APRM and organs of the African Union’s active engagement with Member States at the HLPF. Further, she presented on the efforts exerted by the AU Commission with regards to the Continental reporting on the First-Ten Year Implementation Plan.
On behalf of the APRM’s CEO, Prof. Eddy Maloka, Mr. Jean- Yves Adou, Acting Director, Monitoring &Evaluation emphasized that the continental secretariat – Agenda 2063 Unit has been keen to support African countries through the VNRs/VLRs continental workshops and virtual dialogues to enhance peer-learning and build capacities of national planning experts on institutional mechanisms, M&E tools and VNR guidelines since 2018. He also referred to the importance of APRM reviews to enhance reporting on some of SDGs and Agenda 2063 aspirations.
On behalf of Agenda 2063 Technical Working group (TWG) led by the AU Commission and AUDA-NEPAD, Ms. Sara Hamouda, officer in charge of the APRM Continental governance Program Division at the APRM Continental secretariat, briefed the audience on the second Continental report of Agenda 2063 which was endorsed at the AU Summit in February 2022. She clarified that APRM provided a synthesis of governance performance on the continent and Africa’s governance response to COVID-19 crisis. Having that said, more efforts should be put to report on Aspiration three – Africa with good governance, democracy, and rule of law – which has some common aspects with SDG 16 in Africa.
High-level panellists, from African countries including Dr. Albert K Byamugisha Senior Technical Adviser- SDG – Office of the Prime Minister & Chairperson of APRM Governance Council, Uganda; Mr. Augustus J. Flomo, Deputy Minister for Economic Management, Liberia; Princess Gloria Akobundu, CEO of APRM/AUDA-NEPAD office, Nigeria; and Dr. Felix Addo-Yobo: Advisor, SDGs Unit at the Presidency, Ghana, shared progress towards both agendas at national level and reporting challenges. A number of speakers referred to the utility of APRM Tools including CEPA questionnaire and others which can be used to enhance reporting on SDG goal 16. On another hand, Ms Souad Aden-Osman, Executive Director of the Coalition for Dialogue on Africa (CODA) showcased CODA’s efforts to tackle illicit financial flows in Africa and current partnership with the APRM.
The also APRM supported two VNR Labs; the first with UNDESA to address issues of national development planning and VNR reporting challenges in Africa. The second VNR Lab provided a platform for Ghana to highlight best practices and lessons learnt from implementing the SDGs.
The APRM was also co-organised another side event with the Republic of Uganda Building Effective Models to Accelerate SDGs in Post COVID-19 Era. The side event was hosted by the House of Uganda and witnessed a multi-stakeholder engagement from different national authorities including parliament, civil society, and SDG secretariat -Prime Minister office. Further, H.E Hon. Justine Kasule Lumumba, SDG Focal Point Minister presented Uganda’s progress towards SDGs and Agenda 2063, the way forward and hopes to work closely with APRM for Uganda’s upcoming VNR in 2023.
As an outcome of the APRM and UNDESA three-day capacity building workshop organised in Abuja, Nigeria from 28-30 March on VNRs and domestication of Agenda 2063. The key messages of the workshop were submitted to the President of ECOSOC to share Africa’s voice at the HLPF. Twenty-one 21 African countries presented their VNRs for the 2022 HLPF. Amongst those countries were Botswana, Benin, Cameron, Cote D’Ivoire, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Eswatini, , Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Lesotho, Malawi, Mali, Senegal, Sudan, Somalia, São Tomé and Príncipe, the Gambia, and Togo.
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