The first SIAT regional strategic meeting organized by Our Land is Our Life platform took place in 2009 in Côte d’Ivoire. The outcome was a set of national, sub-regional, regional and international strategies to combat the menace of the TNC in West Africa simultaneously at different levels. After three years, it became necessary to take stock of the activities and incorporate new information to update the strategies. The supply chain analysis study commissioned by CIDSE opened up new and veritable opportunities to engage SIAT in a more focused way.
AEFJN Secretariat participated in this meeting that took place in Accra Ghana from June 20- 24 to June 28-July 1. The report of the meeting is being done by the local organizers and would be published in the next edition of the echo. However, it suffices to state that the meeting went with clear objectives of repositioning the communities for the SIAT campaign through strengthening links with the local Church, strengthening links among the communities and reviewing the current strategies. All these objectives were realized.
With a focus on strengthening links with the local Church, I travelled a few days earlier to have enough time to meet with different Church leaders in the location. This was very fruitful as we had their support and presence during the meeting. They even promised to continue supporting the communities in the future. Worthy of note is that the National Catholic Secretariat of Ghana offered the conference hall for the meeting at no cost. This was made possible because Caritas Ghana is an actor in the platform bringing the Church and the non-Church actors to work together. This action of Caritas Ghana will further contribute to strengthening the link between the Church and the Civil Society in Ghana.
At the beginning, it seemed that bringing the Church and the non-Church actors on the same platform will be mirage but there are indications that AEFJN is on the right path in the initiative of Our Land is Life platform. Time will Tell!