The Food and Agriculture Organization has in a consultative meeting held on Friday 19th January 2024 discussed project possibilities through call for proposal with the leadership of Bombali District Council. It was held in the office of District Council Chairman’s office.The call focuses on addressing environmental issues in least developed countries. For this Climate Action Window, FAO and UN Women are in discussions with the Ministry of Finance ( the AfDB and World Bank borrower or focal point), the Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Local Government, Environment Protection Agency and selected private sectors to jointly submit a single internal proposal submission with the AfDB.
According to Dr Gbessay Momoh, the Resource Mobilization and Natural Resources Management Expert at the FAO, the total amount launched for Africa is fifty-eight million dollars ($ 258). Each country proposal budget should range between $5 to 15 million dollars. Application for the call, he said could be internal or external, with greater chances for those conjointly applying with the Bank which is referred as internal application. External application on the other hand considers agencies applying independent of the Bank.
Key thematic areas for the call are as follow:
▪️ Adaptation – 75%
▪️ Mitigation – 15%
▪️ Technical Assistance -10%
He disclosed the five pillars of the calls as displayed below:
▪️ Pillar 1: Building agriculture, resilience for food and nutrition, security, climate advisory services, Noting that the first pillar would consider drought or climate resistant crops, modern technologies etc.
▪ Pillar 2: Water Resource management, supply and sanitation. This pillar takes into account water catchment management, water supply and sanitation
▪ Pillar 3: _Climate information systems, Early warning and disaster risk management . This pillar will focus on improving weather station, early warning systems, disaster risks management
▪ Pillar 4: _Greening the financial sector and supporting private sector_This pillar will push towards reducing GHG emissions, create the enabling environment to increase country’s access to carbon financing through private sector involvement
▪ Pillar 5: Building resilience and greening the infrastructures . This pillar addresses transition from the use of fossil fuels to clean energy, which is safe for humans and barely leaves behind zero waste.Several cross-cutting issues like the Paris alignment, Gender Youth and Social inclusion, Biodervisity, Disaster risk management, fragility and transitioning.
Dr. Momoh recounted that the project would span for five years with clear roles and responsibilities to be agreed at a later date amongst partners. When funding is secured and depending upon the funding requirements, FAO may go into partnership with the government using Unilateral Trust Fund Agreement and Letter of Agreement with Non-Governmental organizations.
The Council’s Development and Planning Officer, Mr Frank Kanu, said the Bombali District Council is interested in all the interventions, citing that the Council and its partners had taken significant strides in planting trees in the district.
Mr John Dito Kamara, the Gender Officer said women suffer most when it comes to climate issues, stressing the need to open the space for women in all programs.
Women, he said use water more than men and must therefore be treated with utmost importance. Mr Konta Marah, the Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, reiterated that all areas highlighted are key for the Council. Especially at a time when erratic weather conditions are prevalent. The Deputy District Chairman, Mr John Yamba Kanu, appreciated Dr Momoh for bringing the call to the notice of the Council. He requested to know if Council has opportunity to prioritize areas of interest in the implementation.
The District Chairman, Dr Mohamed Mark Babah Sisay appreciated FAO for the thought to partner with Councils for the proposed call.
He assured FAO of his Council’s commitment to jointly secure the project at all cost. Dr MMB Sisay expressed his interest in the call, adding that addressing Environmental issues is a major pillar in his manifesto. He affirmed the need to let communities have a feel of what environmental issues entail across the District. Dr MMB Sisay urged that environmental issues are not about economic theory or political debate, it is about the human race.”It is high time we took extraordinary measures to address extraordinary climatic issues”. Dr MMB Sisay implored. Meanwhile, subsequent meetings are proposed for further engagements with both the FAO, UN Women, EPA, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Agriculture and the Bombali District Council in the drafting of the concept.