Do you have confidence in us to build the Great Green Wall, young people ask leaders

GGW quote inna

A high-level ministerial event on the African led Great Green Wall initiative took place Monday, 8 November at the Climate Change COP26 to identify critical elements to help the public and private sectors to make best use of the billions of dollars pledged this year, and bring to fruition 8,000km of green projects, stretching right across Africa.

Placing local populations and national institutions at the center, making traditional knowledge and capacities the entry points, taking a holistic approach and putting in place effective governance and accountability systems are among the vital elements identified.

Two inspiring youth from the GGW countries, Ms Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim and Mr Sayouba Bonkoungou called for the involvement of local populations, traditional and indigenous communities, stating “the Great Green Wall will not be done in the offices. It must be done by communities, where they live.”

“There is no time. We have nine years, and already climate change has reached 1.5 degrees Celsius in our region. We need action. It is up to you to put this in action. Do you have confidence in our ability to do it? We need to go to COP27 with results, not promises,” Ms Ibrahim said on their behalf.

Environment Ministers from Mali, Nigeria and Senegal, representatives of the African Union and the Pan African Agency of the GGW and other multilateral partners, such as the Global Environment Facility, the Green Climate Fund, but representatives of the governments of Ireland and France were among the panelists.

Ms Inna Moja, renown singer and actress and UNCCD Land Ambassador shared the aspirations of the local populations she met during her journey through the Sahel when filming of the Great Green Wall documentary. “The people in the region have aspirations and dreams in the initiative, and it’s not just a matter of survival, because to have only that wish would be terrible. It is true the Great Green Wall is a vision by Africans for Africa. But it has now become a global movement because it will benefit everyone in the world. It is vital for communities to act and to get the support they need. In my view, the ambition is not unattainable. It can be achieved,” she said.

The event \was organized by the Great Green Wall (GGW) Accelerator, a global collaborative initiative led jointly by the Pan African Agency of the Great Green Wall and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

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