The Director of Macro Economic Policy in the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP), Dr Ernest Makhwaje at the SDGs indicators stakeholders’ consultative workshop in Botswana stated that the country is poised to polish up their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) proposals so as to meet the deadline for submission. Government departments, private sector, development partners as well as the civil society attended the workshop. The Post 2015 Development Agenda termed ‘Transforming our World, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ is underpinned by a set of 17 time bound SDGs which will succeed the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) due to be concluded in two months.
Makhwaje told the meeting that the transition from the MDGs to SDGs is timely for the country as it coincides with the ongoing process of preparing three key national documents. “As such unique opportunity arises for Botswana to align this medium term to long term national goals and priorities to those of the new SDGs,” he said.
The documents include the 2016/17 annual budget speeches, National Development Plan (NDP11) as well as the national vision beyond 2016. According to Makhwaje, these national priorities are geared towards tackling the main challenges facing the country, which includes poverty, unemployment and income inequalities.
The SDGs are expected to form the bedrock of the development planning processes and influence the outlook for Botswana’s next vision. The objective of the workshop was to solicit comments on relevance and measurability of proposed SDGs indicators.
Statistician General, Anna Majelantle said that as Statistics Botswana (SB) they wanted to appraise on the SDG development process by ensuring the participation in the preparation of Botswana’s contribution to the indicator framework. She also called on stakeholders to make contribution in the generation of data as well as conduct surveys to enable SB to timely respond to their immediate statistical needs. Botswana was among the 193 members of the United Nations family that officially adopted the Post 2015 Development Agenda at the United Nations Summit on sustainable development, which was held 3 weeks ago.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, are an inter-governmentally agreed set of targets relating to international development. They will follow on from the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and build on the sustainable development agenda that was finalized by member states where the SDGs were first formally discussed at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in June 2012 (Rio+20).