Participation of UCLG Africa at the First National Asseses of Decentralized Cooperation in Burkina Faso

From 5 to 7 October 2017, at the International Conference Center of Ouagadougou, the first Asseses of Decentralized Cooperation in Burkina Faso took place. These asseses gathered more than a thousand participants: national and local actors as well as foreign decentralized cooperation partners.

By gathering all its international partners in the framework of the same asseses, Burkina Faso went from bilateral asseses to multilateral asseses of decentralized cooperation paving the way to other African countries for a new approach for dialogue between the partners of decentralized cooperation.

These meetings which, brought together partners from Europe, America and eight African countries, were launched by His Excellency, Mr. Simon COMPAORE, Minister of State for Internal Security, on behalf of the Prime Minister of Burkina Faso. In his speech, the Minister of State for Internal Security, but also, former mayor of Ouagadougou, didn’t miss the occasion to give due recognition to the role played by decentralized cooperation in the development of Burkina Faso.

The Minister of State recalled the long progression which started from friendships-twinning to attain decentralized cooperation today, an instrument of co-development that cannot be ignored. Mr. COMPAORE, seized the occasion of the opening ceremony to remind the attachment of his country to decentralization and its implementation through the transfers of competencies and resources which are gradually becoming a reality.

In this regard, the State Minister made sure to mention that, for this year, more than 50 million Francs CFA are transferred to local authorities in the framework of primary education.

To conclude, Mr. COMPAORE expressed his wish that the first asseses of decentralized cooperation become an opportunity for fruitful discussions between partners and serve the interest of the population of Burkina Faso. Prior to the State Minister speech, Mr. Jean Pierre Elong Mbassi, UCLG Africa Secretary General, and after congratulating the initiative undertaken by Burkina’s Government, has called upon African States’ representatives present at the asseses to ratify the African Charter on Values and Principles of Decentralization.

Adopted in 2014 in Malabo (Equatorial Guinea) by the Heads of State and governments, only 3 countries have proceeded to the ratification and have deposited instruments to this day. UCLG Africa Secretary General has also called upon African countries to assume their responsibilities to allow the entry into force of the Charter as soon as possible.

After three days of proceedings, the closing ceremony was chaired by His Excellency, Mr. Christian Roch Marc KABORE, the President of Burkina Faso. On this occasion, the reports of the eight roundtables of the asseses were presented in turn to the President who took note of them. Finally, Mr. Christian Roch Marc KABORE committed himself to be the spokesperson of Local authorities in general and African local authorities in particular during the upcoming EU-AU Summit for the consideration of local authorities in a direct manner in the funding of development up to 20% to 25% of the budgets.