Dr Eugene Owusu, the Presidential Advisor on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), has presented the Kyebi Declaration on Climate Change to the Okyenhene, Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin at the Ofori Panin Palace in Kyebi in the Eastern Region.
The presentation took place at a grand Climate Change Durbar of the Chiefs and People of the Akyem Abuakwa State, which was also attended by Daasebre Akuamoah Agyapong II, Kwahuhene/President of the Kwahu Traditional Council; Ogyeahohoo Yaw Gyebi, President of the National House of Chiefs and Paramount Chief of Sefwi Anhwiaso Traditional Area; and a delegation of chiefs from Asanteman.
The Kyebi Declaration dubbed: “The Kyebi Declaration: A call for increased urgency for Climate Actions with Local Communities”, was issued at the end of a two-day Royal Dialogue on Climate Action and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which was held from 26th to 27th October at the Ofori Panin Palace in Kyebi.
The Declaration aims to act as a catalyst for increased urgency to accelerate Climate Action in Ghana and to secure strong commitments to pursue adaptation and mitigation options that will put Ghana on the path to achieve net zero emissions before 2050.
People who participated in the dialogue included government officials, traditional leaders, local communities, religious leaders, development partners, non-governmental organizations, civil society, youth, the academic community, the business community, and all spheres of life across Ghana.
The overarching objective of the Royal Dialogue is to provide a forum for reflection and dialogue on Climate Action and the SDGs, and define collective actions at the sub-national level to accelerate progress towards the SDGs and Ghana’s commitment under the Paris Agreement.
The pre-26th United Nations Climate Change conference (pre-COP26) event under the patronage of Osagyefuo Amotia Ofori Panin is being organized by the SDGs Advisory Unit, Office of the President, and the Okyeman Environment Foundation.
The Declaration called for the mobilisation of traditional leaders to lead climate and sustainable development actions in their local communities.
It urged the empowerment of traditional rulers through sensitization, training, and capacity building to enhance their understanding and appreciation of the climate change phenomenon and available adaptation and mitigation actions.
It also called for support for traditional rulers to implement climate actions and sustainable development programs that align with the SDGs and with broader community-based efforts to eliminate poverty.
Furthermore, the Declaration called for the strengthening of local governance to make them effective and functional in their roles as local level climate action leaders.
“We reaffirm the fact that climate change is the most pressing human challenge of our time and that it presents a formidable obstacle to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals; we also re-emphasize that meaningful climate actions must be aligned with broader actions to eliminate poverty; and that, taking actions for the climate is no longer a choice or a future endeavor; it is an urgent requirement whose future is now.,” it said.
“We call on the government of Ghana to share this declaration at COP26 Conference in Glasgow and to ensure that the world hears our voices, our concerns, and our commitment to join the rest of the global community to explore transformational possibilities.”
Osagyefuo Amoatia Ofori Panin said Climate Change had serious consequences on human lives, and that it was affecting human health by making the air that they breath less healthy.
He said there was nothing like designer air, stating that the same air was found across the globe.
He appealed to Ghanaians to conserve biodiversity, streams, rivers, and water bodies as part of efforts to mitigate the effect of Climate Change.
Dr Owusu noted that the voices of traditional rulers on Climate Change would be presented by the Government at the COP26 Summit in Glasgow, Scotland.
He commended the Osagyefuo Amotia Ofori Panin for his huge contributions towards combating Climate Change and in addressing environmental challenges.