Esteemed participants, we extend our gratitude to the United Arab Emirates for hosting COP28, where we are united as a global family to address the shared challenges impacting our home.
Emphasising on the theme of this meeting, IGAD stresses that the shift from reactive relief to proactive, climate-resilient development is absolutely essential and calls for anticipatory planning and early action to avert future disasters.
In the IGAD context, the symbiotic link between climate change and conflict is very visible.
This mutually reinforcing relationship amplifies pre-existing vulnerabilities for at-risk communities, societies and states. Consequently, the resultant challenges similarly demand a comprehensive response.
In the IGAD region, climate variations intensify conflicts over pasture and water, thereby escalating the humanitarian burden. Collaborative data analysis from the IGAD Conflict Early Warning Mechanism and the Climate Application Centre validates the cyclic relationship between climate change, conflict, food insecurity, and displacement.
Projections are indicative of worsening conditions in the IGAD region, a heightening of the climate- conflict-displacement nexus and increasing humanitarian needs.
To effectively respond to this looming situation, IGAD proposes a 3-pronged approach that emphasises on anticipatory action, integrating resilience into humanitarian interventions and formulating holistic strategies that address the root causes of the various humanitarian situations in our region.
Concrete actions such as IGAD’s unceasing Peace and Security efforts, showcase some progress in this direction.
Our early warning and disaster response mechanisms have also proven to be effective, recently preventing a severe famine situation with the invaluable assistance of humanitarian actors led by WFP.
To facilitate the shift from relief to development, various interventions including the IGAD Regional Food Security Strategy, supported by our partners including World Bank and FAO focuses on self-reliance and resilience-building.
Looking forward, IGAD commits to scaling up the positive impact of early warning and anticipatory action through regional cooperation, technology, and knowledge exchange.
In conclusion, the journey from relief to climate- resilient development demands our collective commitment. IGAD, drawing inspiration from ongoing initiatives and successes, pledges to lead this charge.
Together, let’s build a future where integrated resilience actions prepare our people, protect our planet, and diminish the need humanitarian intervention in the future.
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