Green Legacy Flagship Program Designed to Address Multifaceted Challenges: DPM & FM Demeke Mekonnen

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Addis Ababa (ENA) February 19/2023 Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Demeke Mekonnen said Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative is a flagship program designed to mitigate the multifaceted challenges that the country is facing.

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The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister made the remark today at the first Pan Africanism Forum organized by the African Leadership Excellence Academy (AFLEX).

Speaking at the occasion, Demeke said Ethiopia’s Green Legacy Initiative is a flagship program that aims at providing various benefits to the development efforts in the country including the fight against environmental degradation and food security challenges.

“When we talk about the green legacy, it is not simple, it is about food security, sustainable development and other related responses as it also aims at addressing challenges of nutrition, food security, sustainable development and alike.”

This flagship program is really the interim point to address different challenges to alleviate poverty and address other challenges. The center of the agenda is about human development, human security and livelihood issue as whole, he said.

In this regard, it needs a concerted efforts and responsibility from different actors in order to have strong national and continental responsibility to address all the outstanding issues, Demeke underlined.

He added that perhaps this year the government is trying to integrate the green legacy program with other different development activities.

Green Legacy Initiative National Coordinator Adefris Worku, who presented a paper at the forum, on his part said that Africa has been suffering common socio-economic and environmental challenges such as land degradation, drought and flood hazards and conflict and youth migration.

According to him, the green legacy initiative of Ethiopia has also been giving hand to sustain the flow of those very important trans-boundary rivers located in the continent.

Regionally the Green Legacy Initiative is a means to reinvigorate and sustain such connectivity among other African countries. It not only benefits Ethiopia but also for downstream countries.

“There are many rivers that have to flow to the downstream countries. We have for instance Wabi Shebelle River flowing in to Mogadishu, we have Juba that is going to South Sudan, and we have the blue Nile that have to cross Sudan and Egypt. Without conserving and sustainably managing natural resources in the mountains of Ethiopia, the impact is not only for Ethiopia but to the downstream countries,” the coordinator elaborated.

The government of Ethiopia stresses the need for the green legacy initiative to be a continental initiative by sharing tree seedlings to neighboring countries with a view to transform the graded land in the region to a green landscape, he said.

Hence, Adefris called on all countries in the continent to join hand with a view to realizing this goal by making the initiative a pan African Initiative.

He further explained that globally the initiative will play a key role in mitigating climate change.

The initiative itself demonstrates the renewed commitment of the government of Ethiopia to address climate change, he said.

He recalled the Ethiopian government has planted 25 billion trees over the past four years exceeding the 20 billion plan set in 2019.

Since then, the initiative has been diversifying farming system and helping the country to conserve bio-diversity rich forests.

The first forum on Pan Africanism held today in the presence of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and other leaders of African countries.

In addition to the leaders of African countries, the forum, that was held under the theme “Reinvigorating Pan Africanism for a Changing World”, attracted policy makers, academician, civil society organizations, youth and women representatives as well as over 300 participants.

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