ENDA Santé has just launched an advocacy campaign on the SDGs in Praia. The meeting is being held in conjunction with the regional meeting on HIV/AIDS in West and Central Africa. This is an opportunity for civil society organisations in the region to reflect on the ways and means of enhancing the role of communities in dealing with health emergencies. The impact of climate change on the health of populations, which is no longer in question, was also highlighted.
New diseases are beginning to emerge in the world. They are mostly zoonoses, transmissible between animals and humans. Many countries do not seem to be prepared to deal with these diseases. The arrival of the Ebola virus and Covid-19 has exposed the flaws in our health systems, particularly in Africa.
Other issues add to the complexity of the picture: the question of climate change and its consequences on the health of the population, women who struggle to access land, the importance of empowering them and young people to enable them to contribute significantly to the development of their locality.
In addition, food self-sufficiency is now a matter of sovereignty for all countries in the world. The emergence of new diseases and the political, social and security instability noted in several countries are now pushing everyone to adapt.
Civil society must be involved in the process of implementing the SDGs
With this in mind, civil society actors in West and Central Africa want to take their place in resolving these issues. They aim to position themselves to play a decisive role in the implementation of a transformative 2030 agenda.
The Executive Director of the Civil Society Institute for Health in West and Central Africa thus raises the debate on the position of civil society in relation to the achievement of the SDGs. He also stated that the achievement of the 17 SDGs requires the involvement of communities. And the role of civil society is to fight to better position itself, rethink its action and decompartmentalise for greater efficiency.
With regard to the emergency management cycle, Dr Abdoulaye Bousso recommends anticipation for the efficient management of populations. For him, African states must learn from the lessons of previous epidemics and pandemics. The example of Covid-19 was given. Dr Bousso maintained that the same mistakes should not be repeated. He outlined ten points of learning from Covid-19 to stimulate reflection among the various actors in civil society. They can be summed up in one question: Will we be ready for the next pandemic?
Côte d'Ivoire has had lessons learned. It has capitalised on the experience gained during Covid-19. This fact facilitated the rapid implementation of a contingency plan. This allowed for an effective response to the health emergency