The Point (Banjul)

25 April 2013

Gambia: Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance Gambia Chapter Launched

Civil Society Organisation, farmer network organisations, NGOs, in collaboration with the Department of Water Resources and the University of the Gambia last Monday launched the Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance Gambia chapter, at the Tango conference hall.

The launching forum, which brought together representatives across civil society organisation and other networks and government official was organised under the auspicious of the World View The Gambia.

The Pan-African Climate Justice Alliance is a newly established network of Pan-African civil society platform, which tries to share information and strategies. It is also aimed at advocacy for fairness and justice, international climate change and sustainable development process.

In his welcome remarks at the launch of the forum, Ousman Yabo, the Executive Director of TANGO, described the launch as another milestone that needs to be considered in the history of civil society.

Noting that NGOs are mandated to mobilise and share information with civil society organisations, Yabo said, the setting up of the Alliance is a step in the right direction.

In giving an overview of the Alliance, Amadou Taal, the Chairperson of World View The Gambia and also the focal person for the Alliance, explained that the alliance is a newly established body, with headquarters in Nairobi Kenya.

He said the rationale behind the alliance is to join in the fight against climate change in Africa, as climate change is no longer an isolated issue.

While expressing the need for people to look at how climate change affect their agricultural productivity, Taal, highlighted some of the reasons responsible for the verse diverse of climate change, its causes and the need for proper adaptation in our policies and programmes at all levels.

According to Taal, the question is who will take the lead of the adaptation programmes.

Noting that the rate at which the environment is polluted is far different from the western countries, he said, "As an Alliance we felt that there is a need to inform the larger number of Africans to understand that climate change is real and something need to be done as a network or alliance of civil society organisation from various parts of Africa."

He expressed the need for collective efforts from the civil society organisation, private sector, farmers' organisation and the government to fight against climate change, which he added, is a cause for concern.

Taal further outlined the commitment of the Alliance and then assured that the network would work hand-in-glove with so many institutions, like the National Agricultural Research Institute, University of The Gambia, Department of Water Resources, among others, to ensure that climate change become a thing of the past.

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