The World Movement, a global network of civil society activists, parliamentarians, and funders committed to advancing democracy, has called for the formation of e-commerce opportunities for the informal sector, local traders, and agribusinesses in Africa.
The Movement is holding its 9th Global Assembly, entitled “Building Strategic Partnerships for Democratic Renewal,” in Senegal this week. The three day event, which comes to a close on May 9th, 2018, has been labeled the ‘Dakar Assembly’.
As the affair comes to a close, delegates, policy makers and high profile individuals are discussing opportunities for small-scale businesses with national e-commerce companies and the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) partner, the Union of traders and industrialists of Senegal (UNACOIS JAPPO).
CIPE is an organisation that works to strengthen democracy around the globe through private enterprise and market-oriented reform.
According to the World Movement, the Assembly brings together hundreds of leaders from civil society, political society, the business community, labor unions, think tanks, religious communities, and others to exchange ideas about, and develop partnerships for, addressing today’s challenges to democracy.
The Assembly offers discussions and workshops on a wide variety of issues including: defending universal democratic values, ensuring democratic internet space, addressing disinformation efforts by authoritarian governments, strengthening civil society’s capacity for democratic governance, and building a stronger unity among democratic actors, among others.
One of the bases for these reforms is social and economic development. The Dakar Assembly believes that government reforms will help drive economic development across the African continent.
“To build momentum for democratic reform in the Middle East and North Africa, the international community needs to bolster unions and small business groups,” said Oraib Al Rantawi, Founder and Director General of the Amman-based Al Quds Center for Political Studies.
He noted that the groups have big constituencies and reach, adding that despite this, reform may take up to 20 years.
“Never lose the faith,” he told delegates and stakeholders at the Dakar Assembly.
Delegates and participants at the event included Abdel-Rahman Y. El-Mahdi, Founder and Managing Director of the Sudanese Development Initiative (SUDIA); Jeanne Irène from Senegal’s Article 19 initiative, Human Rights Lawyers, Sophie Pollack and Milan Antonijevic; Bob Miller and Jayne M. Kurzman, trustees of the Hurford Foundation; as well as representatives from Angola, Burkina Faso and Gambia, among others.