The African Development Bank (AfDB) and the West African Civil Society Institute (WACSI) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) denoting a huge move toward their obligation to engage civil society organizations (CSOs) across West Africa.
The MoU, signed on December 12, 2023 in Abidjan, is the zenith of a two-year collaboration between the two organizations, setting their common vision for a comprehensive and prosperous Africa.
The MoU formalizes an essential organization that will use WACSI’s mastery in building the competencies of CSOs, in line with the Bank’s 2021-2025 Capacity Development Strategy.
The MoU outlines a far reaching action plan based on four key points of support:
• Strengthening the skills and competencies of CSOs on development programming
• Facilitating partnerships and resources mobilization for sustainable capacity building
• Enhancing knowledge management through the generation and dissemination of relevant information
• Advocating for and influencing policy to ensure a more meaningful engagement of civil society in development discourse
During the signing ceremony, Zeneb Toure, the Bank’s manager for civil society and community engagement, recognized the significant role of civil society as partners in achieving shared development goals.
She said the partnership with WACSI will be instrumental in unlocking the full potential of CSOs to contribute to inclusive growth and impactful development across West Africa.
“It is a privilege and an honour for WACSI to play this facilitating role, and we will do it to the best of our ability,” said Nana Asantewa Afadzinu, Executive Director of WACSI. She stressed WACSI’s belief in the pivotal role that a strong, effective, efficient, resilient, and influential civil society can play in ensuring sustainable development for the African continent. “Working with the African Development Bank, civil society will be able to play its role as a development partner”.
WACSI offered thanks for the Bank’s recognition of its work and commitment to supporting civil society.
“This partnership signifies a significant milestone in our efforts to empower CSOs and enhance their engagement in national development processes,” said Ms. Afadzinu.
The African Development Bank has made efforts to catalyze engagement with civil society for more than two decades, and today mainstreams engagement with CSOs in all Bank operational work.
credit: African Development Bank