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Report on Zimbabwe CSO consultative meeting on aid effectiveness
The Zimbabwe Coalition of Debt and Development (ZIMCODD), Poverty Reduction Forum (PRF) and Women's Action Group (WAG) with the support of Reality of Aid (RoA) convened a CSO Consultative Meeting on the Implementation of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness (PD) and the Accra Agenda for Action (AAA) in Zimbabwe on 23 February 2011. The objective of the meeting was to identify Zimbabwean CSOs which are interested in Aid Effectiveness (hereafter AE) and the AAA and provide a platform for information sharing among them.
The meeting followed up on resolutions made by the three organisations at the Southern Africa CSO consultation workshop and multi stakeholders consultation on aid effectiveness held in Johannesburg from 21 - 23 September 2009. The Johannesburg workshop was conducted for selected CSOs in the Southern African region to lead and facilitate national-level consultation processes on the concerns of aid and development effectiveness. In these processes, it is expected that CSOs will be able to contribute in catalysing country level implementation of the AAA through CSO capacity building, multi-stakeholder dialogue and promotion of good practices.
"Welcome Remarks and Objectives"
By Mr. Dakarayi Matanga - ZIMCODD Executive Director
Mr. Matanga welcomed participants on behalf of the conveners. He thanked the RoA for supporting the meeting and also thanked all participants for their interest. He advised them that the objectives of the meeting were as follows:
He introduced the topic by citing the Kaufman definition of AE as "the effectiveness of development aid in achieving economic or human development (or development targets)." According to Kaufman, aid agencies are always looking for new ways to improve aid effectiveness, including conditionality, capacity building and support for improved governance.
He briefly chronicled the history of aid from the aftermath of WW II to the present day. He said that the contemporary discourse on AE started in 2000 with the adoption of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) followed by the 2003 Rome High Level Forum (HLF) on aid harmonization around delivering aid. This was also followed by the 2005 Paris meeting which led to the PD, and the 2008 AAA. The fourth HLF would be held in Busan, South Korea in November 2011. The meeting was advised that the Zimbabwean consultation takes place at an important juncture when a number of factors are considered.
Zimbabwe was looking forward to receiving external assistance from donors following a decade long political, social and economic crisis. It had put in place aid coordination structures and launched a policy to govern this in line with the 2005 Paris Declaration (PD) principles of national ownership, alignment, harmonization, mutual accountability and managing for results. This was done despite the fact that Zimbabwe is not a signatory to the 2005 Paris Declaration (PD) on aid effectiveness.
Meanwhile signatories to the PD had committed themselves to achieving targets on aid delivery by 2010. The fourth high level forum is also being touted as the, "path to development effectiveness" as the diversity of perspectives and the competing influence of multiple of stakeholders are forcing a refocus on development effectiveness as opposed to merely aid effectiveness.
He highlighted the fact that aid was an issue about which there was diversity in terms of perspectives. Whilst some stakeholders promoted the idea of aid as a path to development for the poorer Global South, others claim that it has not and will not make any impact. Others asserted that debt cancellation and cancellation of Third World debts are the prerequisites for development, not aid.
He concluded by drawing participants to prior inputs made by participants who could not make it. The Gender Alternatives Trust (GAT) had made a written submission which was circulated to all participants and taken as tabled (see annex I).
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