WORKING VISIT OF THE EITI INTERNATIONAL SECRETARIAT TO CAMEROON FROM 29 TO 31 MARCH 2017

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A delegation from the International EITI Secretariat, made up of  Mr Mamadou Bady BALDE, Regional Director for Francophone Africa and Madagascar, and Mrs Gisela Aduke Zakiya GRANADO, Country Manager, visited Cameroon from 29 to 31 March 2017.

During the visit, the members of the delegation facilitated a training session on Thursday 30 March 2017 at the EITI headquarters for members of the EITI Committee and the EITI Technical Secretariat. Mr Mamadou Bady BALDE reminded the participants that the last visit of the EITI International Secretariat to Cameroon was in 2014. The visit was in preparation of the next validation of Cameroon scheduled for July 2017. The work focused on the

- Modifications introduced by the EITI 2016 standard (EITI Committee Internal Governance and Committee sitting Fees (Perdiem) policy (see Requirement 1.4),

- Follow-up of Recommendations (see Requirement 1.5.c.iv and 7.4.a.iii), open data (cf. Requirement 7.1.b ... etc.);

- The new validation procedure (see Requirement 8.3) as well as the safeguard clauses;

- Beneficial Ownership (see Requirement 2.5).

After each presentation, discussions focused on: reviewing the progress made by Cameroon as reflected in the self-assessment report prepared by the Committee on the basis of the validation guide of the International Secretariat, the concerns of the participants and adjustments to be made in preparation for the success of the 2nd validation.

In an interview granted to the press, Mr Mamadou Bady BALDE said, "We are here today to help Cameroon better prepare for the next validation scheduled for 1 July 2017. There is a new EITI standard which sets the bar much higher and Cameroon must prepare to demonstrate the progress that has been made over the last three years in terms of transparency and good governance of the extractive sector ".

The visit continued on Friday, 31 March 2017, first through audiences granted to the delegation by the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Mines. Thereafter, the delegation met with each stakeholder in the EITI process i.e. the administrations and other public sector entities, extractive companies and civil society. These consultations and the ensuing discussions gave the delegation the opportunity to call on the various entities to follow up on the recommendations of the validator and conciliators. The meetings provided an opportunity for an open and constructive dialogue on the concerns of the various stakeholders in the EITI process.

At the end of the visit, the delegation from the International Secretariat thanked Cameroonian authorities and the EITI Committee for their warm welcome. They appreciated the quality of the discussions held. As the countdown to the second validation begins, time is now more than ever for action. The recommendations made by the International Secretariat mission must be translated into action as soon as possible before validation begins on 1 July 2017.

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