The 53rd Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD) Governing Council meeting ends today. The meeting which commenced on the 11 November in the Nairobi, Kenya, focused on promoting the use of geo-information for sustainable development in member states.
In his opening remark, the chief administrative secretary, Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning Kenya, Honourable Gideon Mungaro, welcomed the participants and expressed gratitude to the regional centre’s governing council for granting Kenya the opportunity to host the 53rd session of the council meeting. He urged the participants to play their role in ensuring the implementation of the agenda of the meeting in their various countries.
Also, Hon Mungaro highlighted environmental issues of member states, stressing geo-information services as a solution.
“First is about land use administration and land cover change in the region. Land is a factor of production; the impacts of land use and land cover change require transboundary efforts. For example, it is not enough for one country to conserve its forests when its neighbour oversees unchecked illegal logging of forests. We need to ensure that we keep accurate data on land use conversions that can be adequately used for the region’s socio-economic development.”
Hon Mungaro took into cognisance the importance of water to the development, sustainability and resilience of people’s livelihood. He stated that the organisation is open to views and counsel on how to manage and foster the development of amicable solutions around water governance, access and use.
Furthermore, he implored representatives of member states at the meeting to take time to think of the long-term strategies which they can collaboratively implement to mitigate losses associated with such disastrous events relating to climate changes.
Reading a statement from the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), Andre Nonguierma, said that the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD), is one of the institutions set up by ECA and through which ECA provides support to member states for geo-information, especially with regards to capacity building and specialised services. He reaffirmed ECA’s continual support to the Centre.
“Today, I am pleased to reaffirm once again the commitment of ECA to continue to support the Centre. This partnership built upon multifaceted initiatives at the institutional, technical and financial levels, includes among others joint provision of services and technical assistance to member states, regional and international organisations, on issues related to remote sensing and geospatial technologies and their applications to emergencies and key development challenges.”
The event also featured the 53rd Meeting of the Technical Committee of the RCMRD Governing Council, officially opened by the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning, Dr Nicholas Muraguri. According to him, “the principal concern of any country in the world is to define, and better understand the interrelationship between the population, environment, natural resources and economic development, to realise what is commonly known as sustainable development.”
He added that “sustainable development requires proper land management, and it is in this regard that we see RCMRD’s core mission perfectly resonating with what we consider as foundational imperatives of member states’ development agenda.”
The week-long event featured plenary discussions and technical workshops.
About Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD)
The Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD) was established in 1975 under the auspices of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the African Union (AU). It is an inter-governmental organisation, and currently has member states in the eastern and southern Africa regions. The organisation is committed to promoting sustainable development through generation, application and dissemination of Geo-Information and allied Information Communication Technology (ICT) services and products in the Member States and beyond.