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Africa

Representatives drawn from more than thirty countries debated various instruments for attaining good coordination in Africa and proceeded to nominate regional representatives who will serve on Africa’s governing council, a new organ that replaces the old facilitation team. Some of the recommendations made directly touched on what should be done in order for this structure to effectively work with a secretariat that they identified as severely limited in its human-power base at the moment.


According to the draft Health Service Development Plan (HSDP) joint UNDP and Ministry of Heath report of 2005, the per capita health service expenditure of Ethiopia is rated at 5.9 US dollars, the least among a list of other developing countries such as Kenya (31 USD), Uganda(18 USD), and Tanzania(8 USD). The report also indicated that in order to meet MDGs Ethiopia needs to increase the health service expenditure to 34 USD.


African Ministers of Finance concluded their meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Wednesday with a statement reaffirming their commitment to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in Africa by 2015.

The three-day meeting, which ran from 31 st March to 2nd April, addressed new challenges facing Africa in the 21 st century, and the new international economic environment within which they must be tackled.


The report, titled “ Africa and the Monterrey Consensus: Tracking Performance and Progress ,” notes that African economies continued to sustain the growth momentum of previous years, recording an overall real GDP growth rate of 5.8% in 2007. Although 30 countries recorded higher economic growth rates in 2007 than 2006, growth performance varied substantially across countries and regions. The report also notes that economic growth recovery in Africa has not yet translated into meaningful social development and has not benefited vulnerable groups.


Director of the United Nations Millennium Campaign, Salil Shetty said Ethiopia is in a very good position to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight goals to be achieved by 2015 that respond to the world’s main development challenges.


Over 60 per cent of Africans lack access to a proper toilet, according to the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) and UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) ahead of World Water Day – observed on 22 March – whose 2008 theme is “Sanitation Matters.”

The Day aims to raise awareness to the plight of 2.6 billion people worldwide who live without toilets in their homes and are therefore vulnerable to numerous health risks.


Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), including farmers, workers, women’s, faith-based and students’ groups and organizations, have issued a statement declaring that it is clear more than ever, that the Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) are Europe’s means of locking-in the fundamentally unequal relationships between Africa and Europe. Viewed from Africa, this is nothing less than, “re-colonisation.”


Halima Gouroukoye - fistula survivor from Niger
Halima Gouroukoye is one of the lucky women who was cured of fistula - a preventable and treatable childbearing injury that leaves women incontinent, ashamed and often isolated from their communities.

She is now working in her community and with the UNFPA to build awareness about MDG 5 - maternal health.
(mov)

The MDG Africa Steering Group has just completed the second meeting. The level of collaboration representing leaders within the international development community is unprecedented. As has just been introduced by the Spokesperson, we have all the leaders of the world development pillars [African Union Commission, African Development Bank, World Bank, European Commission, International Monetary Fund, Islamic Development Bank, and OECD.]


When the 189 UN Member States adopted the Millennium Declaration in 2000, they committed their respective governments to drastically cut the incidence of poverty by half and make the world a better place for everybody to live not later than 2015. The commitments in the declaration are espoused in a set of eight goals with achievable targets, commonly referred to as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).