Think thank sur les politiques publiques dans le secteur agricole et rural en Afrique de l’Ouest

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Lettre ouverte au Président Obama

4 août 2014

Le Sommet Afrique-Etats Unis commence ce lundi 04 juillet à Washington avec la participation de plus de 45 Chefs d’Etat africains. La plateforme des Acteurs non étatiques panafricains (NSA) dont IPAR est membre, a décidé d’utiliser cette opportunité pour demander au Président Obama de soutenir la résolution de Malabo et la seconde phase du CAADAP. Ci vous trouverez la lettre ouverte qui a été cosignée par des organisations de la société civile et publiée dans la presse et dans les réseaux sociaux.

 

August 3, 2014. 

The African Non State Actors Coalition,

Interim Secretariat

C/O Action Aid,

Gambia,

West Africa..

 

Dear President Obama,

RE : US – AFRICA LEADERS SUMMIT

We, the Coalition of Non-State Actors (NSA) involved in the grassroots implementation of the Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), applaud the initiative your Government took to organise the first US-Africa Leaders Summit. We are confident that most of African Heads of State and Government will join you and your administration to discuss trade and investment in Africa and highlight America’s commitment to Africa’s security, its democratic development, and its people.

We welcome the US-Africa Leaders Summit and strongly encourage the United States of America to use this opportunity to showcase both African and US leaders’ commitments to improving agriculture and food security. In this process, we recall that African Heads of State and Government have declared 2014 as the year of Agriculture and Food Security.

We must emphasize that, in Africa, smallholder farmers and producers, and particularly women and youth, are the heart of the agriculture sector and should be the centrepiece of agricultural transformation.

The US-Africa Leaders Summit is taking place shortly after a historic African Union Heads of State and Government Summit held in June in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea. The Summit resulted in the Malabo Declaration where African leaders pledged to end hunger and malnutrition by 2025, increase agricultural investments, double agricultural production, and create millions of agribusiness entrepreneurial opportunities for its large youth population.

As you stated recently while meeting young African leaders : “…young Africans are less interested in aid and more interested in how they can create opportunity through business and entrepreneurship and trade and .... if you want sustained development and sustained opportunity and sustained self-determination, then the key is to own what is produced, and to be able to create jobs and opportunity organically and indigenously, and then be able to meet the world on equal terms.” 

Mr. President, indeed we fully agree with you as we know through our work on the continent that African youths are looking for sustainable development opportunities for their families and countries so they can contribute to lifting large numbers of fellow Africans out of poverty.

We believe that “Investing in the Next Generation” can be done through investing in agricultural development. It has been proved that building a robust agricultural and agribusiness sector is the quickest way to create wealth. Growth in agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa today is estimated to be 11 times more effective in reducing poverty than growth in other sectors such as mining and utilities. Agriculture has the potential to create millions of jobs throughout the agricultural value chain.

More than ten years after the Maputo declaration, where African Heads of State and Governments committed to spend at least 10 per cent of national budget to agriculture, Africa is still experiencing low food production and productivity. Food insecurity and hunger is a reality for 223 million Africans – a quarter of the population live in hunger.

We know that your Administration considers agriculture as one of the key sectors for the development of the continent. We trust that America has welcomed the Malabo Declaration just as we Non State Actors involved in the CAADP agenda implementation in Africa have. We hope that your collaboration with African Leaders will lead to full implementation of the Malabo Declaration.

Our coalition is committed to supporting the implementation of the Malabo resolutions focusing on eliminating the gender and youth gap in agriculture and promoting qualitative and transparent agriculture investments in an effective, mutually accountable and participatory process. We believe that this will then contribute to the vision of Non State Actors on the continent of “A prosperous Africa where growth is shared amongst citizens through agriculture transformation and wealth creation”.

We eagerly await news of the Summit and look forward to hearing of new commitments to support the second phase of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme through an African-led agribusiness development anchored in shared prosperity.

Yours Sincerely,

Cris Muyunda, PhD
Interim President
African Non Sate Actors Coaltion