Africa Vows to Protect, Develop Ocean Resources

Image

By Kestér Kenn Klomegâh

The UN Ocean Conference (UNOC) co-organized by Portugal and Kenya from 27 June to 01 July 2022 in Lisbon, Portugal was a landmark ocean event for regrouping decision-makers, innovators, private sector actors and stakeholders towards the implementation of the SDG Goal 14 and Aspiration 1.6 of Africa’s Agenda 2063, both related to the management of the Oceans, Seas and Marine Resources for Sustainable Development.

According to reports, the week-long conference brought together some 6,500 participants and was opened by the Secretary-General of the United Nations António Guterres. The Secretary-General of the United Nations (UNSG or SG) is the Chief Administrative Officer of the United Nations and Head of the United Nations Secretariat. There were, among others, high-powered African representatives.

In his speech, António Guterres warned that unless nations overcome short-term territorial and resource interests the state of the oceans will continue to deteriorate. Secretary-General described “the artificial dichotomy” between jobs and healthy oceans as one of the main challenges and asked for strong political leadership, new partnerships and concrete steps.

On behalf of Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Josefa Leonel Correia Sacko, Commissioner for Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment (ARBE) at the African Union (AU) Commission headed the AU delegation to the United Nations Ocean Conference 2022 (UNOC). He was accompanied by Amb Fatima Kyari Mohammed, Permanent Observer of the African Union to the United Nations in New York (USA); Harsen Nyambe Nyambe, Director of Sustainable Environment and Blue Economy; and  Dr Bernice Mclean, Head of Blue Economy at AUDA-NEPAD in South-Africa, Representative from REC, and other staff of the African Union Commission.

President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, and the President of Portugal, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, were elected by acclamation as the Presidents of the conference with statements delivered by each President accordingly.

On the margins of the UNOC, the meeting of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC) was also held, during which the African Union Commission delivered a strong signal on Africa’s readiness to protect and sustainably develop its ocean resources.

The AUC delegation to the conference showcased steps for promoting Africa’s blue economy and sending a strong signal on Africa’s readiness to protect and sustainably develop its ocean resources as well as its contribution to the global conversation on oceans by focusing on unlocking Africa’s potential for innovative, knowledge-based and high-revenue sectors while fostering sustainability and private sector activity, which further places emphasis on the integration of women, youth and Africa’s scientific community within the blue economy.

In addition, the AUC co-organized various side events including two major Africa-focused events: the first event co-organized with IOC-UNESCO on ‘Accelerating innovation, science and technology, and promoting the involvement of women and youth in Africa’s oceans and seas in the context of the ocean decade’ was held on 29th June. It touched on the need to address cultural norms and stereotypes on the one hand and address the resource gap on the other and strengthen women and youth’s participation in the blue economy.

The second event focused on “Shaping a sustainable Blue Economy in Africa” co-organized with AUDA-NEPAD, was held on 30th June and emphasized Africa’s vast amount of marine resources which are highly significant to global ecosystem services and need to be managed adequately for the benefits of the citizens.

The AUC also co-sponsored the following side events during three consecutive days: (i) ‘Blue innovation for multifunctional marine spatial planning’, together with the Stockholm Environment Institute and the Government of Sweden and Kenya on 28th June. It emphasized the importance of ensuring that Africa has access to and ownership of ocean data and ensure the need for Africa to develop its own Marine Spatial Planning that will aid to address data gaps;

(ii) ‘Fostering international and regional cooperation in support of the sustainable development of the blue economy in LDCs, LLDCs and SIDS’, together with the International Seabed Authority, on 29th June;

(iii) ‘Advancing women empowerment and leadership in marine scientific research to support inclusive sustainable ocean governance’, together with the International Seabed Authority on 30th June.

In addition, the AUC delivered a statement during the plenary, emphasizing the crucial role that the African continent must play in the global oceans agenda, considering the vast marine resources that it exerts sovereignty over.

With women and youth on board, the AUC indicates its readiness to protect and develop ocean resources. “Women and Youth represent Africa’s most underutilized assets, so the African Union Commission is committed to identifying ways to promote their integration fully in the conversation on blue wealth,”  AU Commissioner Josepha Sacko told the gathering.

Sacko informed that the AUC is in the process of implementing the blue economy, in various sectors, highlighting that “…we need to enhance traditional ocean-based sectors like fisheries and tourism so that they contribute to the livelihoods of coastal communities that rely on them. But, at the same time, Africa needs to move to a knowledge-based model of developing ocean science and ocean-based technologies. We have the ideas, vision, and ambition to do so.”

Further at the plenary session, the Group of African States emphasized that Africa is determined to sustainably harness the vast potential of its maritime domain and accelerate economic transformation and opportunities provided by the oceans. To realize sustainable ocean-based development, the African Group stresses the need to promote collective efforts to address inherent financial and infrastructure gaps preventing the realization of the full potential of African marine resources.

The African Group further emphasized that oceans are a common heritage to mankind, including the African landlocked States. Achieving Sustainable Development Goal 14 (life below water) and conservation of ocean and marine ecosystems will require bold and ambitious partnership, mobilization of significant financial resources, access to technologies and innovations, capacity-building and effective governance arrangements.

Furthermore, the delegation along with the key partners including the RECs, NGOs, WIMAfrica, Fisheries and Aquaculture Associations participated in various other side events and engaged with innovators, policymakers and stakeholders on a range of issues including conservation, sustainable ocean economies and capacity building, as well as institutional and policy making and implementation, NGO’s and research and civil society organizations, legal instruments.

On 1st July, the side event organized by the Republic of Mauritius ‘Science Consideration for Protection of Marine Ecosystems in Chagos Archipelago’ which aimed at advocating the complete decolonization of the Chagos archipelago. It was an opportunity seized by the Office of the Legal Counsel of the African Union to reiterate its unconditional support to the Government of Mauritius until the completion of decolonization of Chagos is achieved and enjoyed by the Citizens of Mauritius in accordance with well-established principles of international law and the pertinent decisions and Resolutions of Organization of African Unity (OAU)/African Union (AU) and United Nations.

The United Nations attempts at addressing ways by which the private sector provides practical solutions to address the problems such as by improving energy efficiency, and waste management and introducing market-based tools to shift investment, subsidy and production; making it necessary to mobilize actions for the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources by establishing the United Nations Ocean Conference.

Share
Related Stories
Image
25-February-2024

ECOWAS Lifts Sanctions on Niger, Mali, Guinea

By Adedapo Adesanya The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has resolved to lift some sanctions on Niger Republic, Mali, and Guinea. The resolution was taken at the extraordinary summit on the peace, political, and security situation in the ECOWAS sub-region in Abuja on Saturday. While the regional bloc said the political and a few targeted sanctions on the Niger Republic remain, it lifted some financial and economic sanctions on Guinea and others on Mali. Following the military coup in Niger Republic on July 26, 2023, which toppled President Mohamed Bazoum, ECOWAS imposed several sanctions on the country. Now,

Image
25-February-2024

Why Trade Between India and Russia is Experiencing Upward Trend—Kotwani

By Kestér Kenn Klomegâh As President of the Indian Business Alliance (IBA) and the founder of the Imperial Tailoring Co., Sammy Kotwani, offers comprehensive insights on the evolving dynamics of Indian investment prospects in the Russian Federation. He also discusses, in this interview, aspects of business challenges and roadblocks in the context of geopolitical changes and competition as well as the current economic cooperation between India and Russia. Here are the interview excerpts: How would you characterize the geopolitical changes on investment prospects for Indians in Russian Federation? Geopolitical changes have significantly influenced investment prospects for Indians in the Russian

Image
28-January-2024

Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso Leave ECOWAS

By Adedapo Adesanya The trio of Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso on Sunday announced their withdrawal from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). The West African countries are currently led by soldiers following coups that ousted the civilian leadership in the countries with Niger being the latest. Struggling with jihadist violence and poverty, the regimes have had tense ties with ECOWAS since coups took place in Niger in July 2023, Burkina Faso in 2022, and Mali in 2020. All three were suspended from ECOWAS with Niger and Mali facing heavy sanctions. According to an Associated Press report, the

Image
15-January-2024

One in Eight Countries Face Internet Access Risk

By Adedapo Adesanya Surfshark, a cybersecurity company, has warned that internet access is at risk in one in eight countries where elections are due to take place around the world in 2024. Elections have a history of triggering increased internet restrictions in some countries. Such restrictions compromise the integrity and fairness of elections by enabling governments to exert greater control over the public narrative. Surfshark’s Research Hub detailed the countries that have been imposing internet restrictions during elections since 2015, and it forecasts those at risk of doing so in 2024. The report, seen by Business Post, showed that among

More Stories
Image
13-February-2018

Emefienim Becomes Sterling Bank Executive Director

By Dipo Olowookere Sterling Bank Plc has announced the appointment of Mr Emmanuel Emefienim as an Executive Director on the board of the lender. Mr Emefienim, armed with over 25 years of experience in the banking industry, has worked in various middle and senior management roles across Operations, Treasury and Sales. A statement issued by Sterling Bank yesterday disclosed that the appointment of Mr Emefienim has been approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The appointee started his banking career with Oceanic Bank Plc (now Ecobank Nigeria) where he worked from 1992 till 1997, rising to the position of

Image
28-April-2017

Nigerian Stocks Close Week High with 0.02% Rise

By Modupe Gbadeyanka Trading on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) closed for the week on Friday on a high note with the major market indices hibernating in the green territory. Though the market recorded a slight increase, it was enough to give investors the needed confidence to return to the market for better outcome next Tuesday, when activities are expected to resume due to a public holiday on Monday, May 1, to celebrate workers’ day. The All-Share Index appreciated by 5.51 points to close at 25,758.51 points, while the market capitalisation increased by N1.9 billion to end

Image
11-October-2023

IMF Reviews Nigeria’s Economic Growth Downward to 2.9%

By Adedapo Adesanya The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has reviewed its projection of Nigeria’s economic growth in 2023 to 2.9 per cent from 3.2 per cent it initially projected earlier this year. This was contained in a Washington-based lender report titled World Economic Outlook: Navigating Global Divergences released on Tuesday. At 2.9 per cent, the forecast aligns with that of the World Bank for Africa’s largest economy. The IMF also projected that the country’s economy would grow at 3.1 per cent in 2024, with the negative effects of high inflation on consumption taking hold. “The forecast for 2023 is revised

Image
11-June-2021

YouTube Music Unveils New Scholarship Opportunities for Black Artists

By Aduragbemi Omiyale An initiative aimed to empower Black artists and enable them to commercialise their work has been introduced by YouTube Music. The new campaign, #YouTubeBlack Music Future Insiders Scholarship, is in partnership with a renowned music education institution, 1500 Sound Academy, founded by GRAMMY-award winning songwriters and producers, James Fauntleroy and Larrance “Rance” Dopson. Through this scheme, YouTube will fund 10 full-ride scholarships to the Academy’s Live Online 1500 Music & Industry Fundamentals programme. Future Insiders aims to equip at-risk and underserved youth, who aspire to enter the music and creative industries, with skills in content development and

Image
08-December-2019

TETFund Recovers N10bn for Unexecuted Projects

By Adedapo Adesanya The Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) said it has retrieved N10 billion from beneficiary institutions that received funds but did not execute the projects they were meant for. Executive Secretary of the organisation, Professor Suleiman Bogoro, made this disclosure on Friday in Jos, Plateau State, when he inaugurated the new University of Jos Faculty of Engineering building. Also at the occasion, he opened the renovated burnt Main Library of the university and school’s new Faculty of Management building which were funded by the body. The executive secretary, who also laid the foundation for the Faculty of Agriculture,

Image
10-October-2020

Christianity, Cluelessness, Conflict and Decision Making

By Nneka Okumazie Making the right decision is often seen as a good thing – but the right decision based on what? There are many right decisions in the past that became future mistakes. There are many decisions measured on agreement with ideology, desires, trends, status, etc. They may seem right, but they aren’t necessarily so. There are layers to how right – decisions – are. From overall, to mid and mildly, towards correcting the past, making the present better and preparing the future, even for those unconnected to one. There are numerous disquisition of history, expressing mistakes that many

Image
12-August-2016

Top 6 Useful Apps For Avid Readers

By Adeniyi Ogunfowoke Technology is changing almost everything around us including our reading habits. In the past when there were no apps, book lovers had to visit bookstores to buy books authored by their favourite writers. This is no longer the case because there are now very useful apps enhancing or influencing individual reading experiences. These Apps can be used and downloaded by everyone at any time of the day on android, blackberry, or Android phones. Jumia Travel, Africa’s No 1 hotel booking sums up 6 useful apps for book lovers. Goodreads Goodreads has metamorphosed into a sort of social

Image
22-April-2018

Moghalu Gets New Job at Africa Risk Capacity

By Dipo Olowookere Nigeria’s Chinedu Moghalu has been appointed the Senior Communications Specialist/Head, Communications & Advocacy for the Africa Risk Capacity/United Nations World Food Programme, based in Johannesburg, South Africa. In this position, Mr Moghalu will be leading efforts to ensure that the work of ARC in responding to the challenges of climate change and natural disaster risk management is strategically communicated to the Member States and the international community in a way that secures commitment and boosts resource mobilisation. Before now, the appointee, at various times, served as the Regional Head of Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM) for the Southeast

Ad
Ad
Recent Stories
Image
29-February-2024

MasterCard, MTN Partner to Boost Digital Commerce, Payments

By Aduragbemi Omiyale A partnership aimed at driving acceleration of the mobile money ecosystem in Africa across 13 markets has been entered into between Mastercard and MTN Group Fintech. This is coming shortly after the payments giant completed the purchase of a minority stake in the telecommunications company. The deal will see Mastercard giving a prepaid virtual card tailored for MTN’s MoMo customers, granting them access to over 100 million acceptance points worldwide. Additionally, it will empower MoMo merchants to seamlessly accept card payments, enhancing the platform’s instant cross-border money remittance services and capabilities. Further, Mastercard will use its cutting-edge

Image
29-February-2024

Adesina to Receive Prestigious Obafemi Awolowo Prize for Leadership

By Ichie Enyi Ejike Umunnabuike Jr Come March 6, 2024, the Lagos Continental Hotel will host an unforgettable occasion when the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Mr Akinwumi Ayodeji Adesina, will be formally honoured and presented with the distinguished Obafemi Awolowo Prize for Leadership 2023. The Obafemi Awolowo Prize for Leadership was first announced in December 2012, with the official award ceremony held on March 6, 2013. Before Mr Adesina was announced as its fourth recipient, three other distinguished personalities had been conferred with the prestigious award – Noble Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka; former South African President, Thabo

Image
29-February-2024

Exploring Diverse and Evolving Sounds of Africa

Africa’s music scene is a sonic melting pot, where rhythms collide and cultures connect. It’s a universal language, a force that breaks boundaries and fuels the soul. This sonic tapestry isn’t just diverse – it’s explosive. Afrobeats and Amapiano own the spotlight right now. Those irresistible Afrobeats hooks? They’ve got the whole world dancing. And Amapiano’s hypnotic blend of South African house and street sounds? It’s straight-up addictive. Mainstream African artists are pushing the boundaries like no one else, taking Amapiano and running with it. They’re injecting their fire, creating a whole new flavour. This is proof that African music

Image
29-February-2024

Nigeria Needs Policies that Prioritize Economic Recovery—Peter Obi

By Adedapo Adesanya The presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general elections, Mr Peter Obi, has raised concerns over the recent decision of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to increase the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) to 22.5 per cent and the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) to 45 per cent. Mr Obi warned that this move is likely to worsen the ongoing economic challenges faced by many Nigerian households, and emphasized the need for policies that prioritize economic recovery. In a statement issued via X (formerly Twitter), the businessman and former

Image
29-February-2024

Silence Laboratories Raises $4.1m for Privacy-Preserving Computing

By Adedapo Adesanya Silence Laboratories has announced securing $4.1 million in funding to enable privacy-preserving collaborative computing led by Pi Ventures and Anurag Arjun, along with several prominent angel investors. In a statement shared with Business Post, the company said with the market for privacy-enhancing technologies (PETs) growing globally at a compound annual growth rate of 26.6 per cent, there is growing demand. In recognition of this, Silence Laboratories is offering to provide mathematical guarantees for techno-legal expectations as part of a mission to create infrastructure to enable complex data collaborations between enterprises and entities, without any sensitive information being

Image
29-February-2024

MainOne Stretches Submarine Cable to Akwa Ibom

By Modupe Gbadeyanka A submarine cable spanning 45,000km in length known as 2Africa has been landed in Akwa Ibom State by MainOne, an Equinix company. It is one of the world’s largest subsea cable projects and will interconnect Europe, Asia, and Africa, with a design capacity of up to 180Tbps. The cable is the first and only submarine cable system in Nigeria outside of Lagos, and it marks a significant milestone in enhancing broadband connectivity and driving economic development in the South-South, South-East and North-Central regions of Nigeria. The significance of 2Africa lies in its capacity to address critical internet

Image
29-February-2024

Russia, Mali Review Military Partnership

By Kestér Kenn Klomegâh  Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has offered an increased military partnership during the latest bilateral talks held on February 28, 2024, with his Malian counterpart Abdoulaye Diop in Moscow. The significance of Russian support is directed at fighting terrorism and enhancing the combat effectiveness of the Malian army and law enforcement agencies, including the training of soldiers and police officers The interim military government has maintained a well-developed multifaceted nature of bilateral relations with Russia since the military ascended into political power. Russian leader Vladimir Putin and Mali’s Interim President Assimi Goita on the sidelines of

Image
29-February-2024

Anthropics Unveils Zyler Virtual Try-On for Menswear

By Modupe Gbadeyanka One of the global leaders in virtual fashion try-on technology, Anthropics, has moved to transform the future of online shopping with the introduction of the Zyler Virtual Try-On for menswear. The new initiative will improve the way consumers shop for clothes, providing a realistic virtual try-on experience. With it, customers can upload a headshot, enter some measurements, and then see themselves on the screen wearing the outfit. Powered by the latest research in Artificial Intelligence, Zyler creates a lifelike virtual representation of the user, allowing them to see how different garments fit and look on their unique

Image
29-February-2024

Aradel Holdings, CSCS, FrieslandCampina Sink NASD Exchange by 0.79%

By Adedapo Adesanya Profit taking in the trio of Aradel Holdings Plc, Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc, and FrieslandCampina Wamco Nigeria Plc made the NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange close the midweek session further in the red territory on February 28 by 0.79 per cent. Aradel Holdings Plc lost N20.50 to close at N2,500.00 per share compared with the previous day’s N2,520.50 per share, CSCS Plc depreciated by N1.35 to end the day at N18.65 per unit versus the N20.00 per unit it was traded on Tuesday, and FrieslandCampina Wamco Plc declined by 63 Kobo to N70.25 per share

Image
29-February-2024

Naira Gains as Binance, Others Halt USDT, USDC Exchanges Amid Crackdown

By Adedapo Adesanya The Naira appreciated against the US Dollar in the foreign exchange (FX) market on Wednesday, February 28 as crypto exchanges like Binance, will no longer allow users to buy the US Dollar Tether (USDT) and US Dollar Coin (USDC) stablecoins with Naira after renewed scrutiny from the Nigerian government. The regulatory crackdown continued in the Nigerian FX market as the country moved to aggressively suppress the activities of spectators and traders across digital platforms. On Wednesday, the Nigerian government tricked two executives of Binance – an American and a British Pakistani into the country for a meeting