“We Shall Not Water Down Our Voices” Global March for Climate Action in Dubai
December 9, 2023
On December 09, a momentous global march brought together thousands of passionate climate activists, united in their call for the global north to take substantial actions in cutting emissions and addressing climate justice. Among the fervent participants were thousands representing African Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), specifically under the Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA). The diverse assembly included youth, women, persons with disabilities, and indigenous communities, all raising compelling voices advocating for urgent measures, such as emission reductions, the cessation of promoting the Carbon Market as a solution for climate change, addressing debts, and conveying other impactful messages.
Within this global chorus, African CSOs, through PACJA, made a significant impact with their varied and resonant voices. The participation of youth, women, persons with disabilities, and indigenous communities added depth and diversity to the collective call for climate action. These groups echoed resounding appeals to the global north, urging them to not only cut emissions but also to reconsider the effectiveness of the Carbon Market in combatting climate change and to address the critical issue of debts.
During the march, Dr. Augustine Njamnshi, Chair of Technical and Political Affairs at PACJA, addressed the participants, emphasizing the alliance’s commitment to solidarity with other CSOs and delivering a powerful message to the global north. Dr. Njamnshi highlighted the urgency of their cause, stating, “Enough is enough; don’t get us wrong. We will always be there to make sure we put our voice and are satisfied that we have done our work. We stand in solidarity with others in what is happening all over the world. But just know that whenever there is an issue burning around the world, in Africa, it is doubly challenging. We face the challenge of injustice.”
Dr. Mithika Mwenda, the Executive Director of PACJA, further underscored the significance of events like COPs and global march days as crucial spaces for Africa to articulate its voice on the global stage. He reaffirmed the alliance’s commitment to driving the climate justice agenda, recognizing the multitude of pressing issues while emphasizing that the primary focus in these spaces remains climate change and climate justice.
As the echoes of the global march reverberate, it becomes evident that African CSOs, through PACJA, are persistent advocates for climate justice, using their voices to ensure that the specific challenges faced by the continent are not overlooked. The diverse representation within their ranks amplifies the urgency and importance of addressing climate issues comprehensively, ensuring that Africa’s unique circumstances are given due consideration in the global discourse on climate action.