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Food sov, aid effectiveness activities in full swing in Nepal, India, Uganda

Posted on 29 November 2011
 

The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS), in partnership with IBON International’s Reality of Aid Network (RoA), Better Aid and partner civil society organizations (CSOs), went full swing in the conduct of trainings on food sovereignty and consultations on aid effectiveness in Agriculture and Rural development (ARD) in Nepal, India and Uganda in September. 
 
The trainings and consultations form part of the network’s activities but this time with the use of a structured module that has been a product of a number of years’ research and actual conduct among members. The consultations, meanwhile, are part of the run-up to the High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness (HLF4) which will be held from Nov. 29 to Dec. 1, 2011 in Busan, South Korea. PCFS is a member of the BetterAid Coordinating Group. 
 
Nepal: Peasant movement upholds food sov 
 
Last September 11-13, PCFS, RoA and BetterAid, in partnership with the All Nepal Peasants’ Federation (ANPFa), hosted a two-day workshop on food sovereignty, followed by a one-day consultation on aid and development effectiveness in ARD in Kathmandu, Nepal. 
 
Participants came from remote regions of the country as well as the Kathmandu valley, representing peasants and pastoralists, women and Dalit rural peoples’ federations, and non-governmental organizations working on securing people’s right to food. The program was inaugurated by Bam Dev Gautam, former Deputy Prime Minister of Nepal.
 
IBON policy officer Tanya Roberts co-facilitated discussions on various topics, including campaigning and organizing based on the concepts and demands of food sovereignty, and articulating policies that reflect a food sovereignty paradigm. She also spoke about the particular demands that the PCFS will be bringing forward to the HLF4 in Busan on development effectiveness in Agriculture and Rural Development (see www.foodsov.org/).
 
The President of the NGO Federation of Nepal, Netra Timsina, Deputy General Secretary of ANFPa Balram Banskota, Secretary of ANPFa Hari Parajuli, and Dr. Keshab Khadka, senior researcher at ANFPa, provided key interventions and also facilitated various sessions.
 
The Nepali people are currently in the unique position of being among the minority of citizens in the world whose constitution includes the right to food sovereignty. However, representatives of Nepal’s rural peoples’ movements realize they must organize for food sovereignty to be actualized, and see genuine agrarian revolution as one of the most urgent demands that must be advanced. The participants resolved to continue their efforts in this direction. These same demands were further reiterated the following day, Sept. 14, during a gathering in Kathmandu of peasant youth advocates from across the country.
 
India: Joint event with TNWF in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh 
 
On Sept. 16-18, women and farmers attended a similar three-day event on food sovereignty and aid effectiveness in ARD, co-organized with the Tamil Nadu Women’s Forum and held in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. Many of the speakers and participants expressed concern about the impacts of pesticides, fertilizers and other agrochemical inputs that are poisoning the people and environment in their communities, and strongly expressed the need to more widely promote and encourage organic farming methodologies
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