The highlights of the meetings in May were: Inter governmental negotiations for the post 2015 Agenda with SDGs at its core and second the preparatory process for the third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD3).
For decades, development policy was shaped by the notion that the poor countries of the Global South needed money from the wealthy North in order to advance in their development. At the latest since the 2008/09 financial crisis this view of things has begun to change. Unlike previous years the global civil society is trying to unify their efforts to speak in one voice the concerns for example the CSO statement on global tax standards and norms:
The NGO Committee on FFD organized a side event with the title “Do we have the courage to put people and planet at the center? – challenges for FfD”. The background note was one of MMS contribution to the event. The Ambassador of Ireland to the UN who is also one of the co-facilitators of post 2015 was one of the speakers. (Flyer attached)
More than ever the private sector players are involved at the UN and it is a challenge. Civil society is cautious about the conflicts of interest within entities across the public and private sectors. Vigilance is needed to ensure that the private sector cannot drive technical recommendations and policy-making in the International as well as national arena. For example, Safeguard WHO’s Independence from Private Interests, please watch the following:
During the interactive session between the civil society and the co- facilitators, the concerns were raised and suggestions proposed. The Buss word is Accountability of private sector and Duty holders (Governments) to the Right holders (Citizens).The real question of corporate influence can be watched: https://youtu.be/hOUEL8Cqy8M
The Truth about Trade Agreements: “In both the financing for development negotiations and the post-2015 development process, attention is given to trade policies as an instrument for sustainable development, both within the World Trade Organization and preferential trade and investment agreements. The question of how to align those policies with our objectives here requires us to urgently re-order the hierarchy of obligations to which many Member States currently subscribe.
One evening I had the chance to listen to the founder of Liberation Theology Fr.Gustavo Gutierrez in the Fordham University. (News attached) The preferential option for the poor, he said ‘is not optional but a decision and commitment”.
The struggle at the UN, remind us that the real issue of “greed Vs need” is ongoing!
The good news is that more people are talking about the realities be it climate change or inequality, pressure is building up for a paradigm shift toward new global consciousness. Awareness as Global citizens, who care about the Planet and its people are emerging in certain parts across the globe. It is very slow but indeed a move in the right direction giving hope.
Warm regards ,
Celine Paramunda MMS