Africa: Global Civil Society Pushes for Common Position to High Level Panel on Post-2015 Development Agenda

Photo: United Nations
President Ellen Johson-Sirleaf addressing the meeting

The High-level Panel (HLP) of 27 eminent persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda is holding its 3rd meeting in Monrovia from 30 January-1 February 2013. The central theme of the meeting is National Building Blocks for Sustained Prosperity.

Set up by the UN Secretary-General in July 2012, the HLP is made up of civil society, private sector and government leaders. President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia, President Susilo Yudoyono of Indonesia and Prime Minister David Cameron of the UK are the co-chairs. The HLP will present a report to the SG in the 2nd quarter of 2013 to serve as a key contribution to the UN SG’s report to the General Assembly in September 2013 on possible contours of the post-2015 development agenda.

In accordance with the Panel’s consultative approach, a civil society consultation was held from 28-29 January 2013. More than 100 participants from around the world agreed on a common position presented to HLP members on 30 January -- a day of dialogue between the civil society and the HLP members.

President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, in her welcome message, set the tone for this event: “In developing a new global agenda, it must be acknowledged that the path towards sustainable development and inclusive growth must support job creation; prepare healthy, skilled and educated individuals; take into account changing population dynamics; provide greater fairness in access to natural resources; reduce inequalities; especially among adolescents, youth, women and other vulnerable populations; increase social protection for the most vulnerable; promote universal access to sexual and reproductive health services; and ensure environmental preservation.”

The CSO meeting final communiqué highlighted the centrality of population issues such as sexual and reproductive health and rights for all, population dynamics, and sexual and gender-based violence for the post-2015 development agenda.

The CSO called on the HLP to among other things:

  • Propose the use of alternative economic models and approaches that combine growth with human development and human rights in ways that are environmentally sustainable;
  • Insist on the collection of disaggregated data including by age and sex to strengthen the implementation of laws, policies and programs;
  • Ensure that the issue of violence against girls and women is prioritised and addressed;
  • Advocate for initiatives that promote quality education for girls and boys, health care, sexual health information, adequate nutrition, and services for children including those with disabilities or HIV, and protection of children from all forms of violence and exploitation including early and forced marriage:
  • Realize the potential of the demographic dividend through comprehensive youth policies that include provision of more and better education, support for young people to obtain decent and well-paid jobs, access to finance and knowledge to become innovators and entrepreneurs, as well as the ability of all young people, especially adolescents to obtain comprehensive sexuality education, and sexual and reproductive services, and to empower and resource girls to prevent teenage pregnancies and violence, and provide sensitisation and training for boys to promote gender equality and prevent violence;
  • Address the achievement of gender equality, the protection of women’s human rights including sexual and reproductive rights and support for women’s empowerment are critical to the success of the entire post 2015 development agenda.
  • Useful resources:

  • http://monrovia2015hlp.org/welcome.html
  • www.worldwewant2015.org
  • UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, delivers a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe and every young person's potential is fulfilled.

    For more information, please contact:

  • Hugues Koné, Regional Communication Adviser, UNFPA Dakar Regional Office: +221 77 569 7623; kone@unfpa.org
  • Calixte Hessou, Communication Officer, UNFPA Liberia : +231 886 55 49 57 ; hessou@unfpa.org
  • Mandy Kibel, Media Adviser, UNFPA New York : +1 212 297 5293; kibel@unfpa.org
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