The Director of Budget at the Ministry of Finance who doubles as the National Designated Authority for the Green Fund Climate for the Gambia recently briefed the media about the Green Climate Fund (GCF) activities and how to get access to the fund.
Speaking at the briefing, GCF's Focal Point, Bai Madi Ceesay, said the meeting was the first in a series of sensitisation programmes planned under the Gambia's Readiness Support Programme with the Green Climate Fund.
The briefing entailed discussion on various topics, such as what is the Green Climate Fund, the role of the National Designated Authority (NDA), the Importance and process of accreditation, investment areas of the GCF, Development of Strategic Framework and capacity-building for NDA.
Mr Ceesay explained briefly about what Green Climate Fund is all about by reminding journalists of The Gambia's vulnerability to climate change, citing various impacts, such as coastal erosion, temperature increase and erratic rainfall patterns.
He said as a response to the threat posed by climate change, The Gambia as a party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) was required to identify and nominate a public institution to act as a Nationally Designated Authority (NDA) for the Green Climate Fund.
He said the Green Climate Fund was created in 2010 and is the current major funding mechanism under the Climate Change Convention, with the goal of supporting member countries to minimise the impact of climate change by building resilience and also decreasing greenhouse gas emissions.
The GCF has two main interest areas in relation to climate change, namely supporting mitigation and adaptation interventions.
Mr Ceesay gave a brief overview of the role of the NDA, highlighting four main roles, such as broad oversight of strategic direction of GCF portfolio in The Gambia.
He explained that Accredited Entities (AE) are institutions that upon evaluation are found to be financially sound and receive funds on behalf of the GCF for project implementation.
The AE would therefore be responsible for the procurement activities, monitoring and evaluation and also regularly report to the fund, he added.
Mr Ceesay disclosed that two workshops were carried out earlier in the year targeting the public and private sector institutions respectively.
He added that the interview with the media was the beginning of the second phase of the campaign which would be more intense and target a wider audience.
This would include radio and TV programmes as well as a countrywide sensitisation tour, he said.
For her part, the Alternate Focal Point, Fatou Kine Jobe, gave an overview of the accreditation process for the Fund.
She informed the meeting that the GCF does not provide funding directly to implementing parties of projects but channels the funds through an institution, agency or organization that it has accredited know as an Accredited Entity (AE).
An accredited entity is an institution which acts as a liaison between the project implementers and the GCF, she said.