From 10 till 20th June, the presidents and some technicians from our partner organizations PNOPPA (national farmer organization of Benin) and CTOP (national farmer organization of Togo) were in Brussels to meet up with the European Commission and to participate in the EU-ACP Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA), which took place from 15 till 19 June in the European parliament.
Since more than three years now, Vredeseilanden together with SOS Faim support the participation of West-African farmer leaders from Togo, Benin, Senegal, Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso at these half-yearly JPAs, were EU and ACP parliamentarians discuss development and trade issues. The farmer leaders had good discussions and exchanges of views with as well European as their own African members of parliament, about the challenges they face in their countries and the propositions they have for the new 11th European Development Fund (EDF). A few days earlier, on 13th June, the farmers had also the opportunity to present their policy recommendations related to this 11th EDF and agriculture, to representatives of the European Commission (DG Development and DG Agriculture), African ambassadors, national development agencies and European ngo’s. Recommendations were clear and testimonies came right from the heart. The Commission’s representatives declared to have had truly important input for their policy-making process around the 11th EDF.
Hereby you can find a declaration of the farmer platforms after the meeting with the European Commission and a booklet that capitalizes the experiences of more than three years of lobbying European and ACP parliamentarians through the EU-ACP Joint parliamentary Assemblies. (Both documents in French).
Saartje Boutsen Advocacy Coordinator Vredeseilanden / VECO