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2022 HLPF Summary & Reflections from TAP Steering Committee Member MEKWUYE Margaret Olabisi

2022 HLPF Summary & Reflections from TAP Steering Committee Member MEKWUYE Margaret Olabisi

By MEKWUYE Margaret Olabisi, CSCSD

I was invited to represent the TAP Network during their engagement around the 2022 UN High-Level Political Forum, providing my perspective from the TAP Steering Committee and work with my organization, Civil Society Coalition on Sustainable Development Nigeria (CSCSD). The theme of the 2022 HLPF was Building back better from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) while advancing the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The 2022 HLPF, which was the first in-person meeting of the HLPF in three years, assessed the impact of COVID-19 and the various conflicts and crises ravaging our world vis-à-vis the successes and implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs.  The activities of the 2022 HLPF provided various recommendations on modalities for advancement so that no one is left behind.  The Goals reviewed were 4, 5, 14, 15 and 17.  There was a stock taking of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the SDGs, along with various engagements and groundwork on 2023 SDG Summit and the mid-term review.

On Monday 4 July, 2022, with support from TAP Network, I arrived New York.  Tuesday 5 July was the opening of the Forum.

With the invitation from the ECOSOC President, on Thursday 7 July, on behalf of my organisation CSCSD, support from TAP Network and representing Together 2030 in Major Group and Other Stakeholders, I participated in a Fireside Chat on the theme “Working Towards The 2023 SDG Summit.”  Our presentation proffered solutions and recommendations towards the preparations for the mid-term review of the SDGs and the September 2023 SDG Summit.   CSCSD demanded that the 2023 Summit must be a commitment summit and emphasised the importance of Government to come to the 2023 summit with concrete and ambitious commitments towards the progress of the SDGs. 

44 Countries presented their VNRs which provided opportunities for experience sharing, in the way of successes, challenges and lessons learned.  The HLPF adopted a 142-paragraph Ministerial Declaration of the different ways to support sustainable development.  I hope that the declaration will further guide the implementation of the SDGs.

On the sides, I also participated in CSO meetings in person and virtually.  One highlight was a joint meeting of CSOs to share key priorities and to discuss joint campaign work in preparation for 2023 Summit at the Scandinavian House. TAP Network also hosted a Members and Partners Luncheon that provided an opportunity for the membership to share experiences, introduce themselves and align priorities and planning for 2023.

I joined the 2022 Voices of SDG16+ Campaign virtual meeting that featured local CSO voices to showcase their SDG16+ work around the world through videos, stories and illustrations; and additionally the Global SDG16+ Coalition’s interactive dialogue on reinvigorating action towards an agenda in peril.  On Thursday 14 July I was a speaker at the side-event on the 2022 Rome Civil Society Declaration on SDG16+, which represented a call to action for safeguarding commitments to just, peaceful and inclusive communities. 

It was a wonderful 14 days of meetings and networking in New York. My participation in the HLPF was impactful.  The physical nature of the forum afforded me the opportunity to engage with colleagues and share experiences of CSCSD’s work at the national and sub-national levels.  Speaking at the HLPF was a call to governments to ensure an integrated approach towards the 2030 Agenda.  TAP Network provided the opportunity for me to showcase CSCSD programs and activities, especially our civil society work at the grassroot level, various trainings and formation of SDGD16+ Clubs in Nigeria. 

The various side-events, and especially the TAP Members and Partners Luncheon, was an avenue for TAP Network to coordinate and strengthen membership engagement for years to come.  It was rewarding speaking at this event, where I felt we were able to introduce and showcase TAP Network while also allowing various CSOs who attended to form a framework for prioritising and planning towards 2023. 

CSCSD’s mission at the local level is to continue strengthening the capacity of our members, especially at the grassroots, and scaling up the SDG16+ Clubs. Our advocacy will be in continuous partnership with Government through the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on the SDGs (OSSAP).  Our members will be engaging especially looking towards 2023 and Nigeria’s presentation of a Voluntary National Review (VNR) next year.   We hope to see that Nigeria implements the 2022 HLPF recommendations towards the 2023 Summit.

In conclusion of my time at the 2022 HLPF, it is clear that CSOs are doing their part by engaging through grassroots mobilisation, membership trainings, publications, story-telling and blogs.  It is time that governments do their part by exhibiting more commitments or else the Global Agenda may fail.

Thank you.

MEKWUYE Margaret Olabisi

About TAP Storytelling: In 2021 TAP Network launched the TAP Storytelling Initiative, which aims to closely and frequently highlight the work of the TAP Network membership through working directly with them to produce educational online content about their endeavors addressing SDG16+ and accountability for the 2030 Agenda. Together in this initiative, TAP aims to spotlight the work of our Members and Partners and the challenges, successes, failures, processes and problem solving that comes with it, while also offering the chance for wide promotion through TAP’s outreach channels. We hope that these opportunities will not only offer heightened visibility of the work of our Network, but will also inspire and educate more commitments to SDG16 and transparency and accountability for the 2030 Agenda as a whole. If you are interested in spearheading this work with us, head to our TAP Membership Engagement Portal where you can find the Storytelling Form to submit your interest.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed on the TAP Network Blog Platform are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the TAP Network. Any content provided by our bloggers or authors are of their opinion.

source: https://tapnetwork2030.org/2022-hlpf-steering-committee-reflections/

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