AUDA-NEPAD’s 68th Steering Committee Meeting takes stock of progress made
“As the seasons change, we are reminded that the ongoing work of transforming the continent requires innovation in how we conduct our work”, stated Ms. Nardos Bekele-Thomas, CEO of AUDA-NEPAD.
The 68th Steering Committee Meeting of the African Union Development Agency-NEPAD (AUDA-NEPAD) convened on October 31 and November 1, 2023, in Johannesburg, South Africa. Representatives from 33 African Union Member-States came together to review updates on AUDA-NEPAD’s program implementation and Agenda 2063 progress, along with discussions on outcomes and decisions from previous statutory meetings, ensuring a well-organized and coordinated approach to advancing Africa’s development goals.
The Steering Committee meeting served as a platform for robust discussions, focusing on innovative solutions to overcome financing challenges amidst global crises. Delegates emphasized the vital role of member states, international partners, and the private sector in financing African development programs. The importance of embracing agility and resilience in the face of challenges was a recurring theme throughout the discussions.
Building on the momentum of the previous year’s achievements, the agency’s Chief Executive Officer, Ms. Nardos Bekele-Thomas, highlighted AUDA-NEPAD’s continental footprint. She reported on significant advancements across priority themes such as Health, Infrastructure Development, Climate Change, Agriculture and Rural Transformation, Digital Transformation, Innovation Ecosystems, and Accelerating Sustainable Growth with Decent Job Creation. Notably, Ms. Bekele-Thomas spotlighted the successful launch of the “Team Africa Resource Mobilisation” initiative and the draft Second Ten-Year Implementation Plan (STYIP), which will serve as the basis for specific strategic plans for AU entities aligned with Agenda 2063.
Addressing delegates, Ms. Nardos Bekele-Thomas, CEO of AUDA-NEPAD, challenged member states to actively contribute to the agency’s mission, stating, “As member states, this is an opportunity for you to contribute to this agency that you created. Let’s reflect openly and discuss how we can make this agency work for Africa and Africans. The agency must be resilient, effective, and result-oriented.”
The meeting, marked by spirited discussions and shared purpose, Ambassador Ashraf Swelam, Co-Chair of AUDA-NEPAD Steering Committee, underscored the tangible impact of AUDA-NEPAD’s work, stating, “The role of AUDA-NEPAD is not theoretical; it touches the lives of people. We, as the Steering Committee, stand firmly behind the CEO, providing AUDA-NEPAD the necessary resources to implement projects that make a real difference in the lives of Africans.”
As the meeting concluded, it made a lasting impression on Africa’s journey towards progress. The mutual dedication of member states and AUDA-NEPAD to collaborate, be innovative, and ensure the agency’s strength resonated in the conversations. With the guidance of the Steering Committee and the unwavering commitment of AUDA-NEPAD’s leadership, Africa is well-positioned to surmount challenges, attain sustainable development, and forge a promising future for its inhabitants.