Foreign Minister calls for promotion of resilience, innovation, reform and recovery in localising the 2030 Agenda

The Honourable Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Mamadou Tangara, on Thursday, calls on participants during a virtual event to promote resilience, innovation, reform and recovery in localising the 2030 Agenda.

He adds that these are crucial in realising efforts for better communities which make better countries and better countries make better regions and better regions make better world. Below is full text of the speech.

OPENING REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY DR. MAMADOU TANGARA, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS OF THE GAMBIA, AT THE VIRTUAL EVENT: FROM LOCAL TO GLOBAL: BUILDING ON WHAT WORKS TO ACCELERATE PROGRESS ON THE 2030 AGENDA. LADIES AND GENTLEMEN

It feels like just yesterday that we were gathered in Banjul for the Forum on localising the 2030 Agenda, under the Theme: Building on What Works. I am elated to see many familiar faces today. Though we may be separated physically, our presence is a testament to our unwavering commitment to this noble cause.

 

As you all know the Banjul Forum, which I must say was the first of its kind, presented a unique opportunity to bring together actors at all levels of national and regional development, to share experiences and best practice, and then synthesise these best practices into a template for sustainable development that is conceived and implemented at the grassroots. Without a doubt, the Banjul Forum was a resounding success. The development of country-specific frameworks showcasing the components, mechanisms and partnerships evident in successful locally-led initiatives, and the ingredients necessary for their replication is a formula which holds great promise for the attainment of Agenda 2030 in West Africa.

Through this Forum we got to hear amazing stories, stories of devoted champions leading innovative initiatives towards peace and sustainable development within their communities, stories of fruitful cooperation between donor partners and municipal authorities, stories of successful joint initiatives between the UN Country teams and National Governments towards putting in place frameworks for sustainable development.

Through all these stories one thing remains clear; the development process must include all actors at various levels of the development process. As the famous African proverb goes, “if you want to go fast, go alone. But if you want to go far, go together. Seeing all of you present on this virtual event leaves no doubt in my mind that indeed we are in this together.

This event comes at a time when the world is faced with unprecedented challenges of historical proportions. The COVID 19 Pandemic continues to wreak havoc on a global scale and constitutes a setback towards the attainment of national and global development objectives. We have each been affected in one way or the other and most importantly our work has been adversely impacted. Today's meeting is a testament to the new normal we live.

If there could be any such thing as a bright side to this Pandemic, it is that it has shown us the resilience of the human spirit in the face of adversity; our ability to innovate and adapt even in the face of seemingly insurmountable obstacles. If we are to succeed in localising the 2030 Agenda then we must possess this spirit of resilience, innovation, reform and recovery as it represents a vital fibre of our desire to build better communities. Better communities make better countries, better countries make better regions and better regions make a better world. It all starts with our communities.

This event which marks the culmination of months of hard work would not have been possible without the seamless collaboration between the Government of The Gambia, The United Nations Trust Fund for Human Peace and Security and The International Peace Institute. I will like to thank the UN Nations Trust Fund for their steadfast support throughout this process and the International Peace Institute for being the driving force behind this successful initiative. I am confident that the discussions that are to follow will be eye-opening as they will be enriching. Stay safe and thank you for your kind attention.

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