The Multi-Stakeholder Conference on the Sustainable Development Goals opened on Thursday, with a call on development actors to strongly work together and forge strong strategic partnership, leveraging the unique strengths and capabilities of each partner.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo made the call in a speech read on his behalf at a stakeholder engagement on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in Accra.
He said there was the need for the citizenry and all stakeholders’ to dismantle the barriers that prevented effective partnerships and replaced them with bridges that would foster effective collaboration.
He said: “We must see the partnership that exist between us as a social contract, and the relationships amongst us should be more relational than transactional, and one that is built on trust and areas of common interest”.
To this end, President Akufo-Addo entreated the private, public and the Civil Society Organisation (CSOs) to take bold ambition in thoughts and actions, creativity, innovation, hard work and most importantly connecting to the positive and abundant energies of the youth.
“There is no doubt in my mind that a key accelerator to achieving the goals is a strong and vibrant private sector which has an infinite space to growth and flourish,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo also noted that for the country to achieve the SDGs and totally capture Ghana’s dignity, there was the need for stakeholders succeeding fully in unleashing the potential of women, adding; “As an African Union Gender Champion, this is an absolute priority for me”.
The conference organised by CSO Platform on the SDGs in collaboration with Deloitte, aimed at providing a platform for dialogue on multi-stakeholder mobilisation and engagement on SDGs implementation in Ghana.
It was organised under the auspices of the Office of the President and the SDGs Advisory Unit.
It was also to provide a platform for stakeholders from the private sector to explore opportunities for business and strategic partnerships that would contribute towards growth and ensure prosperity for the nation.
Speaking on the theme: “Opportunities in Sustainable Development through Strategic Partnerships,” Nana Osei-Bonsu, the Chief Executive Officer of Private Enterprise Federation, said for government to deliver to the satisfaction of the citizenry, the SDGs was a template.
Nana Osei-Bonsu also called for the provision of jobs, and the protection of natural resources to serve as a missing links to policies that had retorted development especially when the private sector was using agriculture as a catalyst to create employment, wealth and eradicate poverty and hunger that was promoting peace and economic growth.
On private sector contribution, he also urged the government to make the investment resources of the sectors be suitable adding; “We at the private sector are looking to engage with CSOs to look at what the SDG is bringing and how collectively we can promote development”.
Madam Christine Evans-Klock, the United Nation (UN) Resident Coordinator, said the 17 SDGs translated the ambition into concrete and measurable results, and while these goals still did not include the traditional areas of development in ending hunger, improving access to good healthcare and promoting gender equality, it is important to remember that they also included a set of goals and targets about prosperity.
In 2015, Member States of the UN adopted an ambitious plan to eradicate poverty, fight hunger, tackle climate change and save the planet from environmental degradation.
This global agenda, according to the UN, is a plan of action for people, planet, prosperity, and peace.
The Government of Ghana on September 25, 2015, committed to implementing the 17 Goals, together with its 169 targets.
In line with this, a National Civil Society Platform on the SDGs was launched in 2015 to ensure a more collaborative and coordinated approach to engaging CSOs on the SDGs.