Panafrican News Agency

Senegal: 'Youth and women at the heart of discussions at 15th Francophonie summit'

Dakar, Senegal (PANA) - Young people and women are at the heart of reflections of the 15th Francophonie summit scheduled for 29-30 November in Dakar, the Senegalese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mankeur Ndiaye, has announced.

"This Summit will be an opportunity for Heads of State and Government to consider the constraints that young people and women of French-speaking countries are facing ...." he said on Monday at a news conference.

He announced that the summit would allow Heads of State and Government adopt a new strategic framework of the Francophonie for the next eight years.

In this regard, he said, the Francophonie should bear in mind that despite the progress made ​​in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), the lives of nearly one billion people had not improved, especially in terms of access to basic social services such as food, sanitation and drinking water, housing, healthcare and education.

On the economic and financial crisis that have disrupted growth efforts of several French-speaking countries, the International Organization of Francophonie (OIF) feels the need to strengthen the economic dimension of the Francophonie to create the conditions for a dynamic cooperation among them.

According to Ndiaye, an economic strategy for the Francophonie would be adopted at the summit to help build the necessary interaction between peace, security and development.

He said "the Francophonie Youth Strategy" would be added to the final declaration of Heads of State and Government and specific resolutions on matters of major interest.

Ndiaye said the Dakar summit would also provide an opportunity for Heads of State and Government to pay a fitting tribute to the former President of Senegal, Abdou Diouf, for his invaluable efforts in his work and the influence of the Francophonie.