, NAIROBI, Kenya, April 17 – With just two months to go to the Rio +20 conference on sustainable development, Transparency International (TI) wants corruption in climate financing addressed at the summit.
TI Kenya Chapter Executive Director Samuel Kimeu said on Tuesday that anti-corruption safeguards need to be part of climate finance mechanisms and processes early enough rather than become an afterthought.
“If Rio+20 does not discuss and put in place mechanisms for transparency and fighting corruption, then we will be setting ourselves up for failure,” Kimeu told Capital FM News after a workshop held in Nairobi on Green Economy towards Rio+20.
He said the conference which will be the 20th annual conference of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development should come up with a clear methodology to monitor the flow of funding through international and national channels.
“Our concern is to bring the issue of governance, transparency and perspectives about fighting corruption into the negotiations. We would like to see Rio+20 outcome clearly incorporate principles of good governance that will ensure resources that are set aside for purposes of combating climate change go to the right places and are not diverted to other issues,” the TI-Kenya boss said.
TI also proposed that the Rio conference should make countries that receive climate financing report on the integration of climate finance into national policy, planning and budgetary systems.
“Donor governments need to assure due diligence in their financial assistance to potential recipient countries by conducting governance assessments that take into account corruption risks,” he said.
Speaking after the same forum, Climate Change Policy Advisor at the Prime Minister’s Office Alexander Alusa said Kenya’s main agenda at Rio+20 will be a push for the adoption of Green Economies and the strengthening of UNEP into an autonomous body.
He said although the Kenyan government supported green growth it should not be used as conditionality for donor aid in the Third World.
A Green Economy proposes to have strategies, policies and programmes that have greater resource efficiency and promote low-carbon development. It is one that results in improved human well being and social equity while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities.
“We are going there supportive of Green Economic development. We think that that Green Economic development should not be subject to or become an excuse for denial of development aid unless it is a condition that you go green. This is the only challenge that the developing countries are facing and is also the African common position,” Alusa said.
United Nations Environment Programme Coordinator, Kenya Country Program Henry Ndede said adoption of Green growth would ensure development without harming the environment despite population growth.
“If we have different sectors of government embracing Green Economy in terms of policy, it will enable the government to allocate specific resources to encourage research and development in the areas that will support and promote the Green Economy as a principle,” Ndede said.
The first Earth Summit in 1992 led to outcomes like the signing of climate change convention, convention on biological diversity and Agenda 21 document which was a comprehensive plan of action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organisations within the UN system and governments.
This year’s Summit aims to reignite the commitment of world leaders to the cause.