Thursday, July 30, 2015

Final Push To Achieve MDGs And Create Sustainable Post-2015 Development Agenda 18

ISPE       EAG

Briefing # 2: Post 2015 and FfD Processes – Which Way to Go?
Global Call to World Leaders, Representatives of 193 UN Member States, 9 Major Groups, other CSOs’ and other Stakeholders.
By Lanre Rotimi and Charles Sheke.                                                                  29 July 2015

The UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), has elected Oh Joon, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea, as its 71st President. It also elected Members of the ECOSOC Bureau for the July 2015 to July 2016 cylce. President Oh has set a 4 Point Agenda for ECOSOC under his watch:-
1.     Making ECOSOC more flexible in its Agenda and its coverage of issues to keep the Council “up to date to this fast changing world”.
2.     Ensuring that ECOSOC is ready to tackle emerging and pressing issues such as inequality, strengthening the coordinating role of ECOSOC in the context of the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, HLPF, especially with regards to the implementation of the Post 2015 Development Agenda.
3.     Establishment of an effective Follow Up and Review / Monitoring and Evaluation Mechanism; Strengthening and Harmonizing the work of the ECOSOC System as a Whole and “rationalizing the agendas” of the Council and its functional Commissions and
4.     Building an “inclusive and engaging” Global Partnership particularly through the Development Cooperation Forum (DCF) and Multi-stakeholder Partnerships.

In Briefing #1, we focused on need to answer HOW Questions now in the FfD and Post 2015 Processes. It is pertinent to note that the latest 26 July 2015 Post 2015 Zero Draft improves on language and text. This is commendable. However, improvements where it matters the most - answer to HOW questions is still missing.

It is clear that without Renewing Minds, Safer World, Progressive Values etc (UNDESA, UNNGLS, other UN Entities focal areas), it will be uphill task seeking to achieve increasing convergence between AAAA (revised), SDG, Synthesis Report and Data Revolution Report Vision Intention and Reality; that should Village to Global Stakeholders fail to shift from current acceleration on Road to Doom and shift to acceleration on Road to Boom, the ultimate consequences could be catastrophic.

Points raised in these Policy Briefings as well as in 7th Intergovernmental Negotiation, IGN Meetings, New York 20 – 24 July 2015, Monday Group 4 and Friday Group 8 Brief Statements and Longer Statements, can help achieve increasing convergence between AAAA (revised), SDG, Synthesis Report and Data Revolution etc Vision Intention and Reality - if well supported for full implementation with effective monitoring and evaluation of this implementation by UN Secretary General, UNDESA, UNNGLS,        co-Facilitators, 193 Member States and other Stakeholders Worldwide.

President Oh’s 4 Point Agenda complements Points made in the 7th IGN Statements and Policy Briefings #1 and 2. ECOSOC will be helping to achieve President Oh’s 4 Point Agenda and in ways that help achieve increasing convergence between AAAA (revised), SDG, Synthesis Report, Data Revolution Report etc Vision Intention and Reality, if ECOSOC under President Oh’s watch effectively support the practical implementation of the good ideas and pertinent suggestions set out in these documents with effective monitoring and evaluation of this implementation.

Knotty and Sensitive Outstanding Issues

There are many knotty and sensitive outstanding issues in the FfD and Post 2015 Processes whose successful resolution greatly depends on Getting Every One Involved - within and outside New York - and ensuring that No One is Left Behind - Worldwide. Some of these issues are:-
1.     CBDR or SR: What is the definition of CBDR / SR? What are the successes, flaws and failures on Responsibility issues in MDG 2000 - 2015? If Responsibility successes are to be optimized and Responsibility flaws and failures are to be reduced, which is the better option to adopt CBDR or SR?
2.     Approach: What are the flaws and failures in MDG 2000 - 2015 arising from lack of One Worldwide Approach? Why has One Worldwide Approach recommended in Synthesis Report not been adopted in FfD and Post 2015 Processes after 8 months? How can One Worldwide Approach for AAAA (revised) and SDG be quickly selected?
3.     Fighting Corruption: What are the flaws and failures in MDG 2000 - 2015 arising from weak fight against corruption? Why are CSOs', Member States and other Stakeholders seeking to avoid or evade Design and delivery of Effective Public Support for Anti Corruption Efforts? How can War against Corruption in AAAA (revised) and SDG be fought and won on successful and sustainable basis?
4.     Answer to How questions: The latest 26 July 2015 Post 2015 Zero Draft show commendable improvement in text and language but once more does not answer AAAA (revised) and SDG How questions. That is, they remain Plans without Action. If each Action Agenda Item in AAA (revised) and SDG is to be fully implemented with effective monitoring and evaluation / follow up and review of this implementation - How can this be done to produce AAAA (revised) and SDG as Action Plans with Action?

Our Suggestion: UNDESA and UNNGLS create Platform for answering above and related questions as basis for enriching the Post 2015 Development Agenda Consultations from Village to Global levels. This could result in AAAA (revised) and SDG Documents and all that follows helping to achieve FfD and SDG Vision Intention and Reality. As long as these knotty and sensitive issues remain unresolved, success implementing AAAA (revised) and SDG could be limited and this could lead to ultimate catastrophic consequences. This is avoidable if corrective action is taken now.

New Business Model or New Development Model

For the UN system to respond adequately to today’s critical challenges, it is clear that there must be full implementation with effective monitoring and evaluation of all Action Agenda Items in AAAA (revised) and SDG and that this involves all 193 UN Member States. To achieve this, it is also clear that both public and private funding of AAAA (revised) and SDG must increase. Funding from both the public sector and private sector must be high in quality, including through strict limits on earmarking. Norms, standards and guidelines must be set to govern all interactions of the United Nations with the corporate sector, and both the intergovernmental framework and UN institutional capacity for monitoring and overseeing partnerships must expand.

Perhaps most importantly, at this stage in the ECOSOC, FfD and Post 2015 Processes, the surrounding discourse needs to fundamentally change, drawing a clear distinction between those who regulate and those who are regulated; those who give equity and loan financing and those who give grant financing and reclaiming the public space for the UN system and within it. And responsibilities need to be more than just generically “shared”—they must be well delineated and defined, grounded in norms that protect the collective public interest, and linked to varying capabilities hence the need to come up with clear definition of CBDR and SR as basis for making informed choice and the speedy resolution of remaining knotty and sensitive issues identified above.

FfD and Post-2015 Processes aims for a Transformative Agenda. Is this to be sought in the “New Business Model” that has emerged, where the focus is, literally, on large Corporate Interests or in a “New Development Model” that could emerge, where the focus is, essentially, on lifting above Poverty line of Poor Citizens in each of the 193 UN Member States? Can the UN system ever be fit for “purpose in the 21st Century” as well as fit for “we the peoples” in the Global Village of today, if private players, arriving with a mix of contradictory incentives, increasingly channel funds and steer agendas without democratic scrutiny? Can democratic scrutiny be effective and efficient if the UN System in the new dispensation, does not promote and protect minimum certain levels of Hard Competences – Learning and Skills and Soft Competences – Character, Courage and Mind Set in representatives of each Stakeholder Group participating in the implementation of each Agenda Item in AAAA (revised) and SDG as well as the monitoring and evaluation of this implementation in ways that help achieve increasing convergence between AAAA (revised) and SDG Vision Intention and Reality?

In the Post 2015 Development Agenda – AAAA (revised) and SDG, the 193 Member States face a Turning Point. Endorse or tacitly accept the “New Business Model” despite its gaps, disconnects, flaws and failures. Or embrace a “New Development Model” capable of removing the gaps, disconnects, flaws and failures in the FfD and Post 2015 Processes and in ways that reaffirm that 193 Member States primary responsibilities are to speak and act according to the inherent rights of their citizens, and the planet they share. Only the latter choice has hopes of putting the World on Track for Transformation that could be successful on sustainable basis, that is, on Track to achieve increasing convergence between AAAA (revised) and SDG Vision Intention and Reality.


Many UN Staff, Developing Countries and CSOs’ were disappointed with outcome of FfD Conference, Addis July 2015. To avoid possibility of similar outcome, at this stage in the debate leading to the UN General Assembly September 2015, it is already crucial to think ahead and consider proactively the follow up. Key points such as taking decision on the: Choice between “New Business Model” and “New Development Model”, selection of One Worldwide Approach; finding answer to HOW questions; the modalities for implementation; the modalities for monitoring and evaluation / follow up and review ensuring that found answer to HOW questions are fully implemented with effective monitoring and evaluation of this implementation within the ECOSOC, FfD and Post 2015 Processes; and the place of Civil Society and other relevant Stakeholders cannot just be left to happen, but need to be actively discussed and established and on time.
Lanre Rotimi
Director General
International Society for Poverty Elimination /
Economic Alliance Group
Akure – Nigeria, West Africa.

M: +234-8162469805

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