Launch of the Economic Development in Africa Report 2017: ‘Tourism for Transformative and Inclusive Growth’

WHAT: UNIC Pretoria in partnership with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) invites media to the launch of ‘Economic Development in Africa Report 2017′ produced by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) on ‘Tourism for transformative and inclusive growth’. The report encourages African countries to harness the dynamism of the tourism sector, which has been praised for its capacity to stimulate economic growth and create jobs by attracting investment and fostering entrepreneurship. If properly harnessed, tourism can also contribute towards preserving ecosystems and biodiversity, protecting cultural heritage and promoting empowerment of local communities. The United Nations designated 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.

WHO: Claudia Roethlisberger, an economist in the Division for Africa, Least Developed Countries and Special Programmes in the UNCTAD.

WHERE: Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) Head Office, 19 Fredman Dr, Sandown, Sandton

WHEN: Wednesday, 5 July 2017 at 10:30am

Distributed by APO on behalf of UN Information Centre in Pretoria (UNIC).

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Source:: Launch of the Economic Development in Africa Report 2017: ‘Tourism for Transformative and Inclusive Growth’

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DRC: IFRC welcomes formal end of Ebola outbreak, reiterates need to invest in strong local response

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) welcomes the declaration of the end of the two-month Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

“While this announcement comes as a sigh of relief for the affected communities, as well as the local and international actors involved in the response, this outbreak is yet another reminder of the persistent vulnerability of many communities in Africa,” said Dr Fatoumata Nafo-Traoré, IFRC’s Regional Director for Africa.

“So while we celebrate, we also must anticipate the next Ebola outbreak or health threat. We call on our partners to increase their investment in community-based surveillance and response,” Dr Nafo-Traoré said.

The Ebola outbreak was confirmed by the DRC Government on 11 May 2017. Four people died and eight were infected. On Saturday, 1 July 2017, after 42 days without recording a new case, the DRC Government together with the World Health Organization declared the outbreak officially over.

The country’s familiarity with the highly infectious disease, and its expertise in responding to it, played a key role in the control of the outbreak.

“The Red Cross has responded to all past Ebola outbreaks in the country and has a strong network of experts,” said Gregoire Mateso, President of the Red Cross of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. “We mobilized senior technical staff who brought their previous experience to fight against this latest outbreak.”

IFRC released just over 380,000 Swiss francs from its Disaster Relief Emergency Fund to bring supplies and personnel to the affected area, and to support on the ground training of volunteers.

In all, local experts trained 150 Red Cross volunteers in safe burials, community-based surveillance and water and sanitation. They identified and reached out to people who may have been exposed to the virus, provided psychosocial support to families and communities, and served as a critical link between authorities and international organizations on the one hand, and affected or vulnerable communities on the other.

Distributed by APO on behalf of International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

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United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka Appointed for a Second Term

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres, following consultations with Member States and the Executive Board of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women (UN-Women), announced today the appointment of Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka of South Africa as Executive Director of UN-Women for a further term of four years.

Before joining UN-Women, she worked with women and girls in different capacities in civil society and as a public representative, focusing on political and economic rights as well as girls’ education. Her experience includes promoting gender equality for women in both the private and the public sectors and involvements in her country’s struggle against Apartheid. As World YWCA coordinator for young women’s programmes she has worked with young women all over the world.

Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka was the first woman to hold the position of Deputy President of South Africa (2005-2008). She initially became a member of parliament (1994) chairing the Public Service Portfolio Committee. She was Deputy Minister in the Department of Trade and Industry (1996-1999), Minister of Minerals and Energy (1999-2005) and briefly served as acting Minister of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology (2004). In all her portfolios, she was actively involved in policy and legislation that impacted positively on the lives of women and girls.

Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka holds a PhD on education and technology from the University of Warwick, United Kingdom.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations – Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.

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Deputy UN chief highlights stronger AU-UN partnership to benefit Africa’s youth

Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed today called for strengthening the relationship between the African Union (AU) and the United Nations to deliver on promised development for Africa’s youth.

Addressing her first African Union Summit since taking office, Ms. Mohammed said that the AU’s thematic focus this year on youth is a “powerful reminder” of the core principle at the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the AU’s strategic framework known as Agenda 2063 and other global agreements, namely, creating a better world for the next generation.

“For the 226 million young people aged 15 to 24 living in Africa today, these agendas address challenges and opportunities that are integral to their futures,” she said.

“Today you are here taking decisions that will ensure that Africa benefits from the full potential of all its people, including young women and men,” she added, in a nod to this year’s theme of Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through investments in Youth.

“Investing in our youth today reaps the dividend of a peaceful and prosperous Africa tomorrow.”

Addressing leaders from across the continent who have gathered at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Ms. Mohammed called for “building new bridges between us, and fortifying the ones that already exist” to deliver on the promises of the development agenda for Africa and its people.

In April, the UN-AU annual conference in New York resulted in a joint framework for enhanced partnership on peace and security. The two organizations are now preparing a joint framework on sustainable development, focusing on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and of Agenda 2063, according to Ms. Mohammed.

She also noted that the UN will be collaborating with the AU on a new UN-European Union initiative to be launched at the UN General Assembly this September to end gender-based violence around the world.

The deputy UN chief also highlighted some of the other areas where the UN and the AU are working more closely, including on efforts to enhance the UN’s partnership with Africa’s regional economic communities in areas of peacekeeping, elections and democratic transitions.

Secretary-General António Guterres recently reiterated the need for “predictable, reliable and sustainable” financing for AU peace operations, and is said to be working on a set of concrete proposals for the UN Security Council.

“Our efforts should continue to be based on urgency, flexibility and innovation to improve complementarity, cost-effectiveness and impact,” Ms. Mohammed said.

She also echoed Mr. Guterres’ call at the G7 summit in Italy, where he urged world leaders to invest in young people, with stronger investment in technology, relevant education and capacity-building in Africa.

“The challenge of strengthening Africa’s human capital, starting with its young people, has galvanized commitments to promote their rights and invest in quality and relevant education at all levels, health, science and technology and innovation,” said Ms. Mohammed.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations (UN).

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Source:: Deputy UN chief highlights stronger AU-UN partnership to benefit Africa’s youth

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