Director of Planning and Development at UNIMAK, Emmanuel A.B. Turay writes:
UN/UNIMAK ENDS A DAY TOWN HALL MEETING WITH STUDENTS
The Office of the UN Coordinator in collaboration with UNIMAK Planning and Development Office has ended a day meeting with staff and students of the University of Makeni on the new global development goals known as the ‘Sustainable Development Goals’ (SDGs).
In his welcome statement, the Vice Chancellor of UNIMAK, Rev. Prof. Joseph A. Turay, said UNIMAK had the vision on the type of world we want to live in, where sustainable development is a linchpin. Currently the Vice Chancellor stated that every government, every institution, every sector is mainstreaming sustainable development into its policies, strategies and its activities underscoring that our world is at its ecological limit point and if we are to save it, sustainable development must be taught in our schools and tertiary institutions. He called on the students to consider these new global development goals as a major task that all should work toward to achieve the expected outcomes.
The Resident Coordinator of the UN operations in Sierra Leone, Dr Gabriel Rugalema in his presentation on ‘View from New York on the SDGs – Global significance and relevance to Sierra Leone’; gave an overview about the transition from the MDGs to SDGs noting key areas that he laid emphasis on especially goal numbers 1,4, 6 and 17 that address no hunger, quality education, clean water and sanitation, and partnership for the goals.
Dr Rugalema said that the University of Makeni, among other institutions, should embark on the three main functions of their establishment that is teaching, research and extension services so that together we can achieve the SDGs.
Other presenters included, Dr Michael Gboun, a representative of UNAIDS on the topic SDGs and Health, Dr Mary Okumu a representative of UNWOMEN on the topic, SDGs and Gender and the WFP Regional Officer North, Linus Saur who talked about the SDGs and Food Security.
The meeting, facilitated by UNIMAK‘s Planning and Development Office, concluded with a question and answer session. This meeting is in preparation for a bigger one that is expected to take place on the 26th & 27th February this year at UNIMAK.