The need for good governance has been emphasized in numerous speeches over the last four days. Remarks pertaining to this have included highlighting the need for increased capacity in fiscal management. At the same time, delegates have recognized that maintaining good governance does not simply include budgetary planning. Participation, particularly by civil society, is also essential.
In the question and answer periods following joint plenary sessions, several delegates have called on “experts” to improve their role in finding solutions to consequences of climate change. While academics, government officials, and scientists have been recognized as crucial to the climate change mitigation process, there is similarly a need for grassroots approaches to adaptation measures. Ministers at this event, including the Honourable Maria Mutagamba, Minister of Water and Environment, reminded civil society groups that they are an essential component to the policy implementation process.
Indeed, it is at the local level where governments can be held accountable for their policies.
The Network of Climate Journalists in the Greater Horn of Africa Chair and Founder, Mr. Patrick Luganda, uses his organization to encourage journalists to utilize newsmedia to raise awareness of climate change issues while at the same time holding governments accountable for implementing policies, including the Ugandan National Adaptation Plan for Action. Indeed, the need for involvement from a variety of actors is essential. According to Dr. Franklyn Lisk, Visiting Professorial Research Fellow from the Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation (CSGR), this Congress is a "heart-breaking meeting", both because of the myriad of stakeholders present and the "inter-generational response" that is apparent by the diverse age groups of conference attendees, including secondary school students.
As delegates begin to stream into the main conference hall at the Munyonyo Speke Resort and Conference Centre, the far ranging representation of delegates at this Congress is notable. A mere glance at conference delegates themselves proves that there is not simply one sector responsible for mitigating climate change. Good governance measures can ensure that all sectors remain transparent, participatory, and accountable.