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Rights-group umbrella wants moves favouring SDGs 

Published : Sunday, 9 April, 2017 at 12:00 AM  Count : 321

 An umbrella group of organizations working on rights issues has urged the government to take relevant steps for the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals mandated by the UN.
Strong and inclusive democracy is also must to achieve the SDGs in Bangladesh, they said at a press conference organized by 23 civil society organizations focusing on right-based issues at the National Press Club in the city.
Syed Aminul Hoque of EquityBD presented the keynote paper in the press conference moderated by Rezaul Karim Chowdhury of the same organization.
Among others Rafiqul Islam of Dwip Unnayan Sangstha, Aminur Rasul Babul of Unnayan Dhara Trust, Dr. Mesbah Uddin Ahmed of Jatiyo Sramik Jote, Zayed Iqbal Khan of Bangladesh Krishak Federation, Md. Shahidullah of Jono Odhayan Kendro and Subal Sarkar of Bangladesh Bhumihin Somity also spoke at the press conference.
In his keynote presentation, Syed Aminul Hoque said corruption is one of the major problems in achieving the SDGs, eating away around 2% of GDP annuallyu which is hampering development effectiveness.
"We should reduce corruption and save public resources. Any idea of limiting the space for free and fair election, free media, independence of judiciary, rule of law, autonomous local government and independence of different constitutional commission will hamper the accountable development. So government should be sincere in strengthening the democracy if sustainable development is a vision," Hoque said.
Dr. Mesbah Uddin Ahmed said, SDGs cannot be achieved without the effective participation of the laborers, and they must get proper wages considering their livelihood.
Md. Shahidullah said, "We observed that during the MDGs, rich countries did not fulfill their pledges to support the least developed countries."
Rezaul Karim Chowdhury said inclusion of CSOs in the SDGs achievement efforts can play a vital role. But their participation is yet to be facilitated by government through an official process.
CSOs are often less effective because government officials hardly pay proper importance to their role and contributions, Chowdhury added.
The term CSOs is believed to be used inter-changeably with NGOs, who are almost identical in structure.    —UNB

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