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The African Development Bank Group on April 29, 2014 in Addis Ababa was represented in a Civil Society Open Day under the theme “Working Together for Inclusive Growth.”
The Open Day aimed to facilitate exchange of information and share ideas about how the Bank can engage with CSOs to successfully implement its framework for enhanced engagement.
The meeting brought together government officials, the Ethiopian CSO community as well as development partners. It featured presentations on the AfDB CSO engagement framework, the AfDB portfolio in Ethiopia and also highlighted CSOs’ operations in Ethiopia as well as their engagement in the water and sanitation sector, agriculture and food security. Participants also viewed a film of AfDB operations in Africa.
Speaking on the occasion, the Resident Representative in Ethiopia, Josephine Ngure, underscored that “The Bank recognizes CSOs as key players of the continent’s development, particularly their role in ensuring sustainable and inclusive growth.” She also stressed that the Bank’s commitment to engage with CSOs in the formulation of its policies, programs and country operations is reflected in all of the Bank’s program and corporate strategies.
For his part, Ato. Haileselaise Gabremiekel, Director of the Monitoring and Support Directorate for the Charities and Societies Agency, said, “Government has played a key role in facilitating CSO operations in Ethiopia.” He added that all stakeholders present have a role to play in operationalizing the Bank’s CSO framework for results in Ethiopia.”
Representing CSOs in Ethiopia, Wz. Mulu Haile, Chairperson, IGAD CSO/NGO Forum underscored the need for engagement with all CSOs in Ethiopia including those operating at the grassroots level. She reiterated that all CSOs should be committed to operationalizing the AfDB framework in Ethiopia.
Through this event, the CSO Open Day, the AfDB stressed the need for strategic partnerships and alliances based on individual organizations’ comparative strengths and areas of expertise as crucial for meaningful engagement. The event also served as an opportunity for CSOs to share their experiences and strategize on how best to engage with the AfDB in Ethiopia.
The workshop concluded with participants agreeing to continue with dialogue and consultation, information exchange and forging of partnerships for the successful implementation of the AfDB CSO engagement framework.