AYEI participating in the Third Session of Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) in Nairobi, Kenya 2023
The third session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC-3) to develop an international legally-binding instrument on plastic pollution, including in the marine environment, took place from November 13 to 19, 2023 at the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. The event saw the participation of more than 1,900 delegates from various institutions including the United Nations agencies, intergovernmental organizations, and non-governmental organizations. This session was held in accordance with the resolution passed by the resumed 5th session of United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA-5.2) which requested the UNEP to convene an INC that would develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution. AYEI was represented in that event by Mr. Salvator Ntakarutimana, the vice-country coordinator of AYEI-Burundi.
In his session opening address, HE Dr. William Ruto, president of the Republic of Kenya called for urgent actions from all stakeholders to protect the environment given that the latter is the foundation of our present and future. In that perspective, he invited the delegates to join the Kenyan government in the campaign of planting trees: “I ask everyone, before leaving Kenya, to plant at least one tree”. The first day of the event was marked by the plenary session whereby different delegates from various UN member states gave speeches, all conveying the same message: action against plastic pollution. After the plenary session, delegates met, for the rest of the event, in contact groups to discuss, revise, and make suggestions on the Zero Draft. The Zero Draft is a text that was designed to guide and support the INC-3 for the latter to develop an international legally-binding instrument whose objective is to end plastic pollution and to protect human health and the environment. The Zero Draft sections tackled by the INC-3 group contacts included (1) primary plastic polymers, (2) chemical and polymers of concern, and (3) problematic and avoidable plastic products, including short-lived and single-use plastic products and internationally added microplastics.
Over the course of INC-3, Members held discussions, went through a compilation of text to include all the views of Members, and prepared and validated a merged text for the Zero Draft instrument which would serve as starting point for the next negotiations at the fourth session (INC-4) to take place in Ottawa, Canada in April 2024, and the fifth session (INC-5), which is scheduled for November/December 2024 in the Republic of Korea.
The session was officially concluded on November 19, 2023 by the outgoing Chair of the INC, H.E. Mr. Gustavo Adolfo Meza-Cuadra Velasquez, who thanked the Government of Kenya and the UN in Nairobi for hosting the session, as well as the Member States, observers, co-facilitators and support staff of the discussions. AYEI has been present in previous summits where the organization ( in Consultative status with ECOSOC) has been keenly dispatching its officials to all sessions with an aim of not only learning, but also sharing with others, giving its inputs in the birthing of this legal instruments whose impact will be greatly be felt on African continent. While preparing for next session ending April of next year 2024 in Otawa,Canada, AYEI will , together with all other international organization be part of this important negotiations programs.
African Youth Employment Initiatives AYEI, in its commitment to advance youth empowerment of African youth through promotion of Agriculture is hosting series of events and online debates in forms of webinars where issues of youth participation in finding lasting solutions to unemployment, food shortage, and rural poverty will be discussed. Remain tuned and visit our website for more details in few days ahead.
By Juvenal Ntakarutimana