Establishment of the national team and public consultation for the drafting of Burkina Faso’s second quadrennial periodic report

Four years after submitting its first periodic report, Burkina Faso’s Minister of Culture, Arts and Tourism, M. Tahirou Barry appointed on November 30th, 2016 the members of the national team in charge of drafting the country’s second periodic report on the implementation of the 2005 Convention on the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions. In this context, Mr Barry stressed that "Burkina Faso ratified the 2005 Convention less than one a year after its adoption, which reflects the country’s interest and the excitement that this Convention has generated and continues to generate. "

This designation took place in the presence of the representative of UNESCO’s Multisectoral Regional Office in Dakar, in the framework of the UNESCO-Sida “Enhancing fundamental freedoms through the promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions” cooperation project. This capacity building programme supports 12 countries, 7 of which are in Africa, in promoting the effective implementation of the 2005 Convention.

The national team is composed of 22 members from public administration, civil society organizations, research institutes and representatives from different domains of expertise that could impact the cultural industries sector. The team will be supervised by Dr Stanislas Bernile Meda and coordinated by Mr Désiré Ouedraogo. Francisco D’Almeida and Valeria Marcolin, two members of the Expert Facility of the 2005 Convention, will guide them in drafting the report.

More than just a statutory obligation, this participatory process represents an opportunity for Burkina Faso’s cultural stakeholders to jointly monitor the implementation of the Convention in the country’s public policies. It will also allow the gathering and organization of useful information regarding the challenges and the innovations to introduce in order to promote the diversity of cultural expressions.

The country has already manifested a clear political will to further reinforce its action through, for example, the implementation, in 2014, of UNESCO’s Culture for Development Indicators. The first results show that more than 170 000 individuals – representing 2.8% of the active population – worked in the cultural industries and that the economic potential of the sector is significant. The richness of Burkina Faso’s contemporary cultural expressions can become an important tool for development; supporting its emergence and sustainability while ensuring opportunities for accessing culture for all individuals, including the most vulnerable groups, is essential.

As mediators responsible for raising awareness of cultural expressions, journalists are key actors in cultural life. Therefore, as part of this process, a press awareness workshop on the 2005 Convention is organized on Friday 2 December, 2016 at the ABMARQ (Ouagadougou). This workshop will address the scope, objectives and guiding principles of the Convention, in particular those relating to human rights and fundamental freedoms.

"UNESCO wishes to reiterate its engagement and offers its support to the State of Burkina Faso in the implementation of the 2005 Convention and in the protection of artistic freedom” said  Maryam Kadia Sow, presentative of the UNESCO’s regional office.