Regional News of 2014-04-16

Ex-Prez Kufuor returns home

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor returned home last night after about two weeks engagements in Brussels, London, New York and Washington DC.

A statement from his Spokesperson, Mr. Frank Agyekum said in Brussels, New York and Washington DC, former President Kufuor, in his capacity as Special Envoy of the United Nations on Climate Change, held meetings with world leaders on the need to increase awareness and funding for environmental degradation in order to avert the dangers posed to humanity by the continued rise in world temperatures.

In Brussels, he held bilateral talks on the sidelines with leaders attending the African Union and European Union Summit and urged them to adopt measures such as re-forestation and the use of climate resilient products that would mitigate the further destruction of the environment.

Among the leaders he met were President John Dramani Mahama, Prime Minster Hailemariam Desalegn of Ethiopia, President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Blaisse Compoare of Burkina Faso and President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria.

In New York and Washington DC, Ex-President Kufuor held talks with officials of the UN and the World Bank on matters to do with Climate Change.

In Washington DC, the meetings included a ministerial dialogue on The Economic Drivers of Climate Change with Finance Ministers from across the world attending the spring meetings of the World Bank.

UN Secretary General Mr. Ban Ki-Moon and World Bank’s Dr. Jim Yong Kim addressed the meeting.

The meeting urged finance ministers to take the lead role in urging their governments to prioritize issues on environmental degradation and help to prepare ambitious plans for adoption at next Septembers Summit on Climate Change to be hosted by the UN in New York.

While in Washington, Former President Kufuor in his role as Chairman of the Sanitation and Water for All (SWA) Partnership chaired the groups biennial High Level Meeting (HLM) which brought together ministers of Water, Sanitation, Environment and Hygiene from about 60 countries.

The HLM, which was also addressed by Mr. Ban and Dr. Kim called for increased action by governments in the provision of adequate sanitation, increased hygiene and potable water for all.

The meeting urged sector ministers to show leadership in tackling problems of water and sanitation and to give strong, actionable plans that will help to bring dignity and comfort to the hundreds of millions in the world who lack these services.

In the UK, Former President Kufuor participated in activities marking the 700th anniversary of Exeter College, Oxford University, his alma mater, which saw the investiture of a new Rector for the college.