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Post 2015 Development Framework: No One Should Be Left Behind

September 22nd, 2014 by Posted in Resilience

Monisha Biswas, Oxfam

Back in 2008, I was influenced by the approach of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which then seemed to have a clear target and timeline. As the UN Millennium Campaign focal person in Bangladesh at that time, my role was to connect civil society organizations (CSOs), policy makers, UN bodies and different constitutions and engage them into a constructive debate on Bangladesh situations and progress made. Soon I realized that it was not enough and had to go deep to ensure the process, accountability etc at different levels. The question then remained unanswered ‘Why this kind of process does not count the voices of the people?’

After United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) in 2012, many of us were hopeful to see the inclusive discussion happening all around the world. This process attempted to count the qualitative aspect besides quantitative targets, also Sustainable Development Goals will be more interconnected than the MDGs. However, financing and commitment from rich countries and private sectors will be a key challenge to achieve those goals by the LDCs and Developing Countries. Bangladesh was one of the 50 countries where both the civil society actors and the national Government were engaged with series of consultative process and it was indeed a great sight to see the government taking one step ahead by proposing a set of targets and indicators.

MDG Bangladesh Progress Report

Oxfam, being the worldwide development agency, was largely involved with the CSO consultation process in Bangladesh and facilitated the thematic consultation under Food Security and Nutrition. Among the nine thematic issues, Oxfam was also engaged in climate change and governance theme. As the Country Lead for Oxfam’s global campaign for food and climate justice, GROW  and with previous connection with the People’s Forum on MDGs (PFM), I got the opportunity to attend series of consultation at different levels.

As part of the GROW Campaign, we here in Bangladesh, have been demanding for Right to Food for all for last two years. The post 2015 consultation process has given such an opportunity to seek long term commitment with national level goals and indicators from the government.   Post 2015 thematic paper

Bangladesh Summit

Bangladesh Summit

Whatever the thematic areas we discussed, one issue came up again and again around the global partnership and we observed that almost no progress has been made under the Goal 8 of the MDG. The role of rich and developed countries and private sectors are still questionable. Another concern related to inequality and inclusiveness was also discussed while we failed to address these with the economic growth. This is not only true for Bangladesh, but same observation came from India and other developing countries. Number of organizations and network collectively organized the Bangladesh Summit during 16 to 19 August 2014, where we organized a special seminar on Sustainable Food Production, Farmer’s Right and Right to Food. The Summit has proposed for a development framework to deal with the economic, social and political aspects simultaneously to bring inclusive growth and sustainable development for future.

As UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has invited world leaders, from government, finance, business, and civil society to Climate Summit 2014 this 23 September to galvanize and catalyze climate action, we wonder if it will be another missed opportunity to stop climate change making more people hungry. We made the specific call to the world leaders and private sectors to promote climate justice.

Climate March in NY. Photo: People's Climate March

Climate March in NY. Photo: People’s Climate March

Still I believe in people’s power and collective action.  As 310,000 marched through New York City on 21 September pushing for international action against global warming and thousands of rallies across the world called on governments for‪ change, I hope this will draw some attention and inspire more people to take action to hold the national and world leader accountable

The writer is the Policy Advocacy Manager and can be reached at: mbiswas@oxfam.org.uk

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