Data is lifeblood for decision-making: Alweendo

04 Nov 2015 20:00pm
WINDHOEK, 04 NOV (NAMPA) – Africa’s economic growth needs to accelerate to at least seven per cent for real economic transformation on the continent, Director-General of the National Planning Commission (NPC), Tom Alweendo says.
Alweendo, who is also Minister of Economic Planning in the Presidency, said while launching the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the National Assembly (NA) here on Tuesday industrialisation is a must in Africa if the continent is to fully benefit from its rich natural resources and reap the benefits of the demographic dividend.
He said in order for Africa to attain industrialisation, there is a need to invest heavily in training and skills development, especially for women and the youth.
This calls for a skills revolution, particularly in areas that are catalysts to industrialisation such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
Alweendo also said one of the challenges that have been identified in the implementation of the SDGs is the lack of baseline data in many African countries.
“Data is the lifeblood of decision-making and the raw material for accountability. Without high-quality data providing the right information on the right things at the right time; designing, monitoring and evaluating effective policies becomes almost impossible,” he said.
He further stated that without data that is fit-for-purpose, it will be difficult for countries to decide which one of the 17 SDGs to target first, let alone monitor and evaluate the progress that is being made.
“In choosing nobility in the pursuit of shared prosperity, the NPC, as the development coordinating institution will in consultation with all relevant stakeholders, formulate a comprehensive SDG domestication plan and strategy,” Alweendo said.
This strategy will be accompanied by a road map with clearly defined, sector-specific milestones to be attained within agreed timelines.
The actual commencement of these activities will be announced once the NPC’s internal consultative processes have been finalised.
Covering the next 15 years, the SDGs replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which expired last month.
The SDGs amongst others include ending poverty in all its forms; achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls; ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all; reducing inequality within and among countries and conserving and sustainably using the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.