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Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in Africa: Call for a Paradigm Shift - African Journal of Reproductive Health, Vol. 20, No. 3, 2016, pp. 19-21

Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) had been a topic of focus in development. The MDGs were 8 goals that all United Nation members agreed to achieve by 2015.  That were committed “to combat poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation, and discrimination against women (World Health Organization). Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that followed MDGs aim to not “leave no One Behind”. Not only are the SDGs more ambitious in their goals ( 17 goals and 169 targets), the SDGs have been developed with better consultations, where African countries have played a significant role, are transparent and aimed to have a participatory process.

These 17 Goals are: the eradication of poverty, end hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, affordable and clean energy, decent work and economic growth, industry, innovation and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, sustainable cities and communities, responsible consumption and production, climate action, life below water, life on land, peace, justice and strong institutions and partnerships for the goal.

This commentary suggests that SDG will only bee successful if the succeed in Africa. The analysis suggested that the reform requires these three categories: those who require reform, those who require a revolution and those who require reversal. Reform is required to meet economic growth and strengthening domestic resource mobilization for development. Revolution is where the progress needs to spread in multiples to meet the targets such as eliminating hunger or reducing maternal mortality. The revolution category is being parried with reducing slum population or reducing waste.

Shettima argues that “Achieving gender equality goals will revolutionize the achievement of the other goals and is sin qua, non for the achievement of the other goals and for the general attainment of the values and ideas of SDGS.” She states that many of these targets under gender equality are embedded in cultural and social norms and legislation and policies might be involved to reach these targets. She calls for the implementation of compulsory free and education of women to meet the goal of gender equality.


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