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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Kilimanjaro Initiative heads to AU Summits

As part of the action plans for the Kilimanjaro Initiative, which commenced since March, this year, will in the coming months head to the headquarters of the African Union Commission (AUC) to register the advocacy and call for action, reports NaijaAgroNet.

This, NaijaAgroNet gathered, will come as part of their participation via delegation at selected AU summits between the month of July and August 2016.

Confirming these plans in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire during a presentation at a workshop hosted jointly by the Africa Media Initiative (AMI) and World Bank in Abidjan, the Africa Advocacy Officer, ActionAid International, Mr. Buba Khan, informed NaijaAgroNet that the plan to AU Summits is a continental call to action so as to push the advocacy to the heads of governments and states in Africa.

Khan also said that the march to AU Summits, will be heralded with a launch of a flagship report on the status of women land rights in Africa.

The target for this specific action will be regional actors in support of rural women to engage in African Union (AU), Southern Africa Development Commission (SADC), Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) heads of states summits.

Further, he said, the journey to Kilimanjaro as scheduled between September and October this year, will see to the launch of Caravans to Kilimanjaro as a creative digital engagement tools will be made available to communicate, mobilise and engage supporters from global North.

Additionally, he revealed that stunts, speaking tour, lobby visits and story-gathering will be planned to engage the public and decision makers in the north.

“Rural Women across Africa, Latin America and Asia will be mobilized to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa,” he said, stressing they will reclaim their power and demand right to access and control of land. Just as government officials and high profile women leaders will be called upon to witness and hear direct voices from rural women.

Key demands the initiative will be asking from AU, Khan hinted will include full implementation of the AU guiding principles on large scale land based investment and the tenure guidelines on land, fisheries and forests through participatory, inclusive mechanisms that prioritise the rights and needs of legitimate tenure users, especially women.

The summit will be charged to ensure free, prior and informed consent for all communities affected by land transfers, including the fair and equitable participation of local communities, especially excluded and marginalised groups such as women, youth, children, minorities, the elderly and disabled.

Participation of the delegation, he explained, will spur review of public policies and projects that incentivise land grabbing, and instead support policies that prioritise the needs of small-scale food producers – particularly women – and sustainable land use.

This, he pointed out will help in regulating businesses involved in land deals so that they are fully accountable for respecting human rights, tenure rights and environmental, social and labour standards. This includes ensuring that investors carry out comprehensive human rights due diligence, are transparent and are fully accountable throughout all their operations at home and abroad, to name a few.

+Remmy Nweke in Abidjan/ED Ops 
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