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Business News of Saturday, 11 May 2013

Source: todaygh

Africa needs climate sensitive budget – Expert

Chairman of the Global Water Partnership-West Africa (GWP-WA,), Hama Arba Diallo, has called for a climate responsive budget that would help African countries, including Ghana, to implement activities on climate flexibility in the sub-region.

The water expert emphasised that the budget must be seen to be building the adaptive capacities of communities in West Africa.

He noted: “The budget should have both technical and financial attachments and there was also the need to communicate such interventions in climate sensitive language to ensure tracking as well as building public confidence in government efforts towards a climate resilient economy”.

Mr. Arba Diallo made the call in an interview section with members of Ghana Water Journalists Network (GWJN) during the opening ceremony of the international conference of the Global Water Partnership-West Africa held in Accra last Tuesday.

Dubbed: “Water cooperation in West Africa: Meeting the challenge of commitments?,” the event was aimed at introducing and adopting the GWP-WA chair’s report and to also introduce and adopt the 2012 GWP- WA progress report and 2013 work plan.

It further shared with partners ongoing initiatives in the region and discussed the best strategies to maximise profit for countries.

Mr. Arba Diallo stressed that the climate sensitive budget must be seen to be clear in communicating how it is addressing sectorial, community, households and individual vulnerability to climate change, while promoting climate resilience.

According to him, since climate change was known to be the greatest developmental challenge of the 21st century with its manifestations such as severe droughts, floods, extreme temperatures and rising sea levels, it had become necessary for the national budget to “have clear and comprehensive interventions towards reducing climate vulnerability.”

He noted that the manifestations which were now visible in West Africa including Ghana had implications for food security, health, water security, shelter and livelihoods of individuals, households and communities.

He commended Africa leaders for measures employed to understand the causes and effects of climate change.

He said all these give an impression that West Africa countries are poised and willing to tackle and manage climate risks.

For his part, acting Executive Secretary of the Ghana Water Partnership, Mr. James Kwame Manso Anyanful, called on the various ministries and inter-governmental agencies in West Africa to rise up to the occasion and coordinate their activities with clear-cut programmes to educate the people, particularly farmers about climate change effects.

He urged Africa leaders to make climate change units more active while considering steps to initiate a local climate adaptation fund.

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