Date: 14 July 2016
Suva – The 2016 Pacific Islands Development Forum (PIDF) Leaders’ Summit concluded in Honiara with the full participation of the Pacific Islands Association of NGOs (PIANGO) as a member of the PIDF Charter.
This is the first meeting of Leaders under the new governance structure since the inauguration of the PIDF Charter on the 4th September, 2015.
PIANGO Board Chairman, Siotame Drew Havea of Tonga, took his place alongside other Pacific Leaders including Solomon Islands Prime Minister Hon. Manasseh Sogavare, Fiji Prime Minister Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama and FSM President Hon. Peter Christian.
Speaking at the Summit, Havea pointed to the vital role that Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) play in enabling people to claim their rights, in promoting rights based approaches, in shaping development policies and partnerships, and in overseeing their implementation.
Havea praised the PIDF for being the only Pacific regional organization with a governance structure that is inclusive of CSOs and the Private Sector.
Havea stated, “Under the Busan Partnership Agreement of 2011 governments are committed to enable CSOs to exercise their roles as independent development actors, with a particular focus on an enabling environment, consistent with agreed international rights, that maximises the contributions of CSOs to development.
This is evident in the role that PIANGO plays as a Charter member of PIDF. As the CSO representative to the PIDF, PIANGO is well placed to bring the issues of the people to the table in discussing high level policies and to ensure engagement of its members at the national level.
Although PIDF has only been around for a short time it has provided the inclusive regional platform as a level playing field for CSOs as equal decision makers in regional matters.”
The PIDF Pre Summit was held on Tuesday 12th July and the Leaders’ Summit was held on Wednesday 13th July.