As Guyana prepares to host the 17th Session of the Committee for the Review of the Implementation of the Convention (CRIC17) of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in January 2019, Minister of State, Mr. Joseph Harmon charged the National Planning Committee to put their best foot forward to ensure that the Conference is not just successful but also establishes Guyana as a major player in the fight against the effects of drought and deforestation.
This is the first such meeting to be held in the region.
According to the Ministry of the Presidency (MotP), Minister Harmon, who has responsibility for the Guyana Lands and Surveys Commission (GLSC), which is the chief organising agency, told the members of the planning Committee at its inaugural meeting in the GLSC Boardroom that Guyana’s hosting of the event is indicative of the Government’s commitment to the preservation of the natural patrimony.
The State Minister also said that for any event to be successful, proper planning must be done and that Guyana has been chosen to host the event is testimony to the development that is taking place within the country.
At COP13 in Inner Mongolia, China in September 2017, Guyana’s involvement was deepened when as a result of the progress made on the voluntary implementation of the Land Degradation Neutrality Target Setting Project, it was selected to be one of four country presenters at that meeting.
Guyana presented the report on a major draft decision on capacity building to ensure the efficacious implementation of UNCCD on behalf of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the country’s representative became the first one from the Caribbean to be elected as a Vice-President of the Bureau of the COP to represent the 33 countries that make up the Group of Latin American and Caribbean countries (GRULAC).
These achievements, Minister Harmon said, are indicative of a country that is going places with its development and making a positive impression on the world.
Meanwhile, Director of the Multilateral and Global Affairs Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Troy Torrington, in brief remarks, said that Guyana’s hosting of this Conference is a significant milestone as the country continues to rely on multilateralism and diplomacy as its first line of defence. The hosting of this Conference, he said, therefore would allow Guyana to fortify its relations with the various countries.
Chief Executive Officer of the GLSC, Mr. Trevor Benn, said that the National Planning Committee brings together a number of professionals from numerous Government agencies and Ministries, who can all provide input to ensure that the event is a successful one.
Resident Coordinator, Ms. Mikiko Tanaka and Deputy Resident Representative, Ms. Shabnam Mallick of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as well as representatives from the Ministry of the Presidency, the Ministry of Public Security, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Public Health, the Ministry of Citizenship, the Ministry of Public Telecommunications, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, Guyana Tourism Authority, University of Guyana and the CARICOM Secretariat, were also present.