The United Nations (UN) in Botswana launched a civil society advisory committee which will focus on creating a forum to discuss, propose and evaluate UN policies at country level aimed at the achievement of common UN and national development goals.
This committee is expected to contribute to the increased effectiveness of the UN action in the country through bringing on board UN Country Team (UNCT), policy deliberations and civil society perspectives that will reinforce UNCT understanding and analysis of national development realities and priorities.
According to a document from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the committee should also have a say on the deepening of the UNCT relations with civil society through engaging into deliberations on development priorities as well as implementation of UN strategies in the country. The UN relations with civil society will be deepened by engaging this committee into deliberations on developments priorities and implementation of UN strategies in the country, says the document.
Additionally, the committee is going to provide policy advice, analysis and advocate for the achievement of common UN and national development goals, and particularly as it relates to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF), MDG-based national development strategy and poverty reduction.
Consistent with its strong UN reform agenda, the release said the Botswana UN office, through the establishment of this committee will play a central role in articulating, supporting UN/Government of Botswana development agenda in the country.
“The most powerful case for reaching out beyond the traditional constituency of central governments and enhancing dialogue and cooperation with civil society is that doing so will make UN more effective and inclusive in addressing ground-level realities,” said the release.
The decision to create this kind of committee, it added, was based on UN Secretary General’s 2005 recommendations on enhancing UN country-level engagement with the civil society partners. This was a direct response to the 2004 Cardoso Report, named after the former Brazilian President who led the review which stressed the need to deepen and strengthen UN relationship with civil society.
Eight Batswana individuals have been identified to comprise the inaugural committee.
The event will be graced by the UN Director of Civil Society Organization, Division Partnership Bureau, Thierno Kane, from the UN Headquarters in New York.