Executive Secretary Robert Hepworth attended the 11th Session
of the African Ministerial Conference of the Environment (AMCEN)
held in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo, 24-26 May 2006.
At the meeting, African ministers for the Environment discussed
key issues mainly related to the environment in Africa; the
financing of environment programmes at a national level, the
biennial work programme of AMCEN; and linkages between AMCEN
and the African Union Commission.
To date, 35 African Parties to the Convention cover the majority
of the continent amounting to 36% of the current 97 CMS Parties.
Since Africa’s fauna is extremely rich, the continent
is a priority area for CMS conservation measures, including
technical and financial assistance. Three Agreements and four
Memoranda of Understanding covering Africa enforce the implementation
of the Convention
Mr. Hepworth’s presentation on the Convention and its
recent initiatives including the Scientific Task Force on
Avian Influenza was well received by the Ministerial Plenary.
A speech delivered at a side event held by the Great Apes
Survival Programme (GRASP) was another opportunity to inform
on the CMS conservation project on gorillas. Working towards
the conclusion of a regional Article IV agreement on gorillas
will raise even more visibility on CMS activities with a clear
focus on Africa.