Cambodia REDD+ Consultation Group Selected
The civil society in Cambodia broke new grounds when they self-selected 18 representatives to form the Cambodia REDD+ Consultation Group (CG).
The members were elected from nine diverse stakeholder groups: academia, international Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), national NGOs; indigenous peoples, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), the private sector, a community forest network, a community protected area network and a community fishery network. Each group was represented by two members.
The Cambodia REDD+ CG is a national platform responsible for providing the link between the Cambodia REDD+ Programme and existing networks of stakeholder groups. It is tasked to provide comments to the REDD+ Taskforce (TF) on the REDD+ Readiness process, while also serving as a forum to represent the views of different stakeholder groups from national to subnational levels. The TF is made up of a cross section of ministries.
A nine-member “Voluntary Facilitation Committee” (VFC) was established in February 2013 to prepare for the formation of the CG. The VFC itself underwent a rigorous selection process, through open applications for expressions of interest which were supported by, among others, peer endorsements. These volunteers were predominantly a mix of NGOs, CSOs, and Indigenous Peoples (IP) organization. Aided by the REDD+ TF Secretariat, the VFC determined the selection criteria for each stakeholder group, identified means to disseminate and receive applications, reviewed the submissions and designed the selection process. In order to ensure as many eligible organizations as possible vote for their preferred candidates, the VFC with the help of the UN-REDD Programme also made on-line voting available.
Following an extensive application and screening process that ran from May through July, 24 candidates, excluding IPs, stood for election. Representatives for the three community networks and private sector were elected by acclamation since each of these stakeholder groups received only two applications.
The selection process for IPs was based on provincial election meetings in the 15 provinces where there were IP populations. This approach was developed through discussions with IPs representatives during a stakeholder consultation meeting in September 2012.
Months of intensive preparation culminated in a national “REDD+ Consultation Group Selection Workshop” attended by over 180 participants from throughout Cambodia. It was held from 29 to 30 August 2013 in Phnom Penh. In addition to the results from the on-line voting process that ran from 9 to 23 August, representatives of eligible organizations also voted in person on 30 August. At the same workshop, the 15 provincial IPs candidates elected two representatives from among themselves.
The selection workshop not only raised awareness about REDD+, the Cambodia REDD+ Programme, and the roles and responsibilities of the CG, it collected baseline data on knowledge about REDD+ from the nine stakeholder groups and the government. This baseline data will be used to measure progress and effectiveness of ensuing awareness raising activities.
The Cambodia UN-REDD National Programme began implementation in 2011 and supports implementation of the Cambodia REDD+ Readiness Roadmap. More information is available at www.cambodia-redd.org