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Africa-Canada Forum
2011 Colloquium

What Environment for Justice in Africa?
Civil Society Challenges for Climate Adaptation and Democracy

O’Connor Salon, Best Western Plus Victoria Park Suite
377 O’Connor Street, Ottawa, Ontario

September 27, 2011

This ACF Colloquium will look at how climate change debates are being shaped in the African context, how African civil society is mobilizing on those issues and how Canadian CSOs are supporting African efforts.  It will also look at the shrinking of democratic space for civil society in Africa in light of global discussions on aid effectiveness and development effectiveness.  The objective is to improve members’ understanding of the major issues and challenges facing civil society to build climate justice and democratic space in Africa, and identify strategies for ACF to continue supporting African civil society work for social justice.   


8:30 – 9:00           Registration and Coffee

9:00 – 9:30           Welcome and Introduction

Jim Davis, Africa Partnerships Program Coordinator, Kairos
Review of the objectives of the day and recapitulation of the debates from previous day

9:30 – 10:30        Civil Society Mobilizing for Climate Justice in Africa

This panel will provide an overview of how climate justice debates are framed in the reality of various African countries and how civil society is mobilizing around the issues.

  1. Mithika Mwenda, Coordinator, Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA)
  2. Bertha Chiroro, Regional Coordinator for Africa for the Global Campaign for Climate Action ( by videoconferencing)

Moderator: Lauren Ravon, Policy Advisor, Oxfam-Canada

10:30 – 11:00      Break

 11:00 – 12:30      The Need for Adaptation

This panel will look at how adaptation can contribute to climate justice and will address the need to support adaptation efforts.

  1. John Van Mosel, Senior consultant and adaptation specialist, Manager of ‘Building Nigeria’s Response to Climate Change’ project for ICF Marbek and CUSO-VSO
  2. Mary O’Neill, Communication Officer, International Development Research Centre (IDRC)
    Building the scientific basis for adaptation in Africa through participatory research: lessons from the Climate Change Adaptation in Africa Program

Moderator:  Lina Holguin, Policy Director, International Programs, Oxfam-Québec

12:30 – 1:30        Lunch and Networking

1:30 – 2:30           Shrinking Democratic Space for Civil Society

This panel will look at the restriction and closing down of democratic space for civil society in the context of global discussions on aid effectiveness and development effectiveness.

  1. Maina Kiai, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association (Pre-recorded video made for CIVICUS World Assembly)
  2. Paul Okumu, Africa Civil Society Platform on Principled Partnership

Democracy, AID and Disenabling Environment

  1. Jacqueline Wood, Policy Analyst on Aid Effectiveness

Global Multistakeholder Efforts on CSO Development Effectiveness and Enabling Environment

Moderator: Denis Tougas, Entraide Missionnaire
2:30 – 2:45           Break

2:45 – 3:30         Strategies to Support Civil Society in Advancing Justice in Africa

Following a short introduction on the global and national political context, participants will break in small groups to discuss strategies for ACF to respond to the closing of democratic space for CSOs, and the need to adapt to climate change.

  1. Fraser Reilly-King, Policy Analyst (Aid and International Co-operation), CCIC

Moderator:  Amélie Nguyen, AQOCI

3:30 – 4:15           Report back from small groups discussions

4:15 – 4:30           Conclusion and evaluation



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