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Enhancing national capacity of governments and indigenous leaders in Africa and Latin America to advance inclusive development in the framework of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

In the four years since the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples, there have been several positive developments by Member States, largely in the African and Latin American regions, to fulfill commitments made in the event’s outcome document. For example, with Development Account support from DESA/DISD, Namibia validated a White Paper on inclusive development and the rights of indigenous peoples and Uganda has undertaken consultations and affirmed its commitment to develop an affirmative action plan for indigenous peoples. In Latin America, El Salvador has adopted a national action plan on indigenous peoples and Paraguay has also begun the development of a national action plan with the support of IFAD.

The present project will build on this momentum, facilitating broader implementation of the WCIP outcome document by supporting further efforts by previously targeted and new countries, to develop and implement policies, plans of action or strategies focused on inclusive development for indigenous peoples. The project will also provide a platform for South-South cooperation and exchange of experiences between the African and Latin American partners. This exchange is expected to be beneficial for participating countries. Although much remains to be done to implement the UNDRIP, Latin American countries have many years of experience in addressing issues related to development and indigenous peoples at both regional and national levels. In Africa, inclusive development for indigenous peoples is an emerging issue, still being addressed by few countries.

The expected result of the project would be improved capacity among local and national government officials in the four participating countries to develop and/or implement policies, plans of action or strategies, in close consultation and collaboration with indigenous peoples, their representative institutions and other relevant stakeholders, to advance inclusive development in the framework of the UNDRIP.

The expected result would be evidenced by each of the participating countries having prepared and/or advanced implementation of a national policy, plan of action or strategy focused on inclusive development for indigenous peoples. The particular instrument to be focused on would be determined based on an initial assessment carried out in each country.

The project is expected to be conducted in partnership with two countries from the Africa region, and two from Latin America. In December 2018, DISD will carry out, in cooperation with the Government of Namibia, a sub-regional workshop on inclusive development in the framework of the UNDRIP. At that workshop, DISD will identify the two African partners. In Latin America, DISD is working in close collaboration with the Indigenous Fund for Latin America and the Caribbean, with which it will identify two partner countries. The project will also use existing training of trainers material developed by DISD, to build the capacity of government officials and indigenous representatives on indigenous issues. In addition, DISD is currently preparing a Guidance Note on the Development of National Action Plans on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in close cooperation with OHCHR that will also support this proposed project. This project will serve as an opportunity for validation and roll-out of this guidance note.