“Toward Agenda 2063 – The Africa we want”
Seminar convened by the NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency (NEPAD Agency), the Institute
for Security Studies (ISS),
and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)
On the 10 February 2015, MISTRA Executive Director, Joel Netshitenzhe participated in a seminar titled “Toward Agenda 2063 – The Africa we want”. Agenda 2063 is an ambitious political commitment for development of Africa toward 2063 and is expected to be adopted in the forthcoming African Union Summit in January 2015.
Convened jointly at Sheraton Pretoria Hotel by the NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency (NEPAD Agency), Institute for Security Studies (ISS), and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), was intended to highlight the aspiration of Agenda 2063 and assess the transformation process that Africa will undergo in the next five decades. The purpose of this seminar was to build a solid and constructive foundation to make Agenda 2063 a reality.
Panel Discussion Notes by Joel Netshitenzhe
TOWARDS AGENDA 2063 – THE AFRICA WE WANT
The starting point in this presentation is about the environment within which Africa operates.
The African Union’s Agenda 2063, NEPAD and the APRM, as well as documents presented today by JICA (Africa 2050) and the ISS (Prospects for reducing poverty in Africa) – and of course many other programmes and publications – should be welcomed because they do help to sustain a paradigm that has taken root in discourse about the continent over the past decade-and-half. Central to this new mind-set is focus on the positive developments in Africa’s growth and development trajectory, and the prospects going forward.
Two critical conjunctural issues attach to this:
- Firstly, visioning and practical actions by the emergent corps of African leaders across all sectors of society are helping positively to influence both African self-identity and global perceptions of the continent.
- Secondly, beyond discourse on the cold indicators of economic growth, the fundamental question of how these developments impact on the human condition in Africa is starting to feature prominently.
Coincidentally, this happens today along with global discourse on social inequality and on the dynamic of the relationship between the state, the market and the citizen. Neo-liberal prescriptions to economic policy and denigration of the role of the state are losing their shine.
It should also be appreciated that global approaches to African matters have changed: from viewing the continent in terms of narrow ideological and geopolitical stratagems, to seeing it as a partner which adds to, and itself benefits from, multifaceted relations with the rest of the world.
Why are we raising these issues about the global and continental conjuncture?