Harare, Zimbabwe (ACBF), 21 September 2010 – The African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), from 28 September to 1 October, 2010, will hold various events around the ACBF 19th Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors in Paris. These events are part of the Foundation‟s build-up toward its 20th Anniversary, which falls on February 9th 2011.
The High Level Forum (HLF), scheduled for 28 – 29 September will focus on: “Repositioning Africa for the 21st Century: Progress, Prospects and Challenges”. The Forum will shed light on the implications of the emerging world order for capacity development in Africa – especially new finance regulation issues, new international competition, crisis exit strategies and future technologies. Panelists will interrogate possible roles that can be played by ACBF in this regard. The HLF will discuss some of the key development topics that are shaping Africa‟s position as a global player. The sessions will also be centred around pertinent issues that have arisen as a result of emerging challenges facing the continent. These include the global financial crisis; governance and transformative leadership in Africa; rethinking regional integration in Africa and revisiting Africa‟s strategic development partnerships for the 21st century and beyond. As Africa continues to grapple with a myriad of challenges, the Paris HLF is aimed at fostering dialogue in order to mobilize the attention of African leaders and development partners on the importance of adopting innovative solutions to capacity development on the continent.
The High Level Forum (HLF) in Paris is the third such event in 2010. The first, held in Accra in February, was entitled „Unearthing the next twenty years of capacity development in Africa‟. The second discussion forum held in March, in Tunis, focused on invigorating dialogue at the highest levels on the importance of building capacity in post-conflict countries. Panelists, including Heads of State and Government, shared their perspectives on how to improve strategies in the affected countries and how to pave the way for focused reconstruction efforts, poverty reduction and sustainable development.
Speaking ahead of the Paris HLF/Board of Governors meeting, the ACBF Executive Secretary, Dr. Frannie A. Léautier, noted that: “This high level discussion forum brings together key players from the public and private sector, as well as leading development experts and delegates from ACBF partner organizations. The private sector has an increasingly important role to play. Transforming the African continent requires a mix of policies, strategies and institutional steps and a real paradigm shift in how we approach the development agenda.
For instance, we have a lot to learn from the BRICs. These countries really matter to Africa, because of their economic weight. As the four largest economies outside the OECD, they have their own stories to tell. As Africans, we can learn from their experiences, as well as tapping into their financial pool.”
Dr Léautier added: “I am delighted that H.E. John Agyekum Kufuor, Former President of the Republic of Ghana will speak to us on the broader theme of good governance and leadership. H.E. Jean Ping, Chairperson of the African Union Commission will address the gathering on “50 years of independence in Africa: looking back and looking forward‟. As an organization, we are about to launch our new and innovative strategy. This strategy will enable us to build new capacity, strengthening and better utilizing existing capacity in a sustainable manner”. She concluded: „We aim to achieve an even stronger track record of development results in the future, by building capacity to deal with uncertainty and channeling capacity to those areas that spur economic growth. Achieving poverty reduction and strengthening good governance can only enhance participation by Africa in the global economy.”
While in Paris, the Foundation will also convene a Monitoring and Evaluation roundtable discussion. This dialogue is aimed at fostering best practice migration, among development practitioners, on measuring the impact of capacity development interventions. The roundtable discussion will seek to garner the support of potential champions to mainstream ACBF‟ Results Management Framework across its interventions.
The official launch of the ACBF Development Memoirs Series on 29th September, entitled „Harnessing experiential knowledge for Africa‟s development‟, will focus on the importance of learning from past experiences and the vital links between knowledge capital and Africa‟s development. The premise is that Africa‟s competitiveness rests on its access to, and utilization of knowledge. By speaking to the importance of knowledge as it relates to Africa‟s development – particularly regarding how Africa can utilize the experience and knowledge capital of seasoned development practitioners from the region – the continent will be able to bridge its knowledge deficit. The Development Memoirs series features several eminent speakers from the Foundation‟s Senior Policymakers and Development Practitioners‟ Sharing Program.
For further information contact:
African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF)
PO Box 1562, Harare
Tel: + 263 4 700208/210