13 Jun 2016
Abdoulaye Mar Dieye
The two fundamental principles of TICAD – international partnership and African ownership – have been reaffirmed time and again.
Less than 90 days separate us from the Sixth Tokyo International Conference for African Development (TICAD) which will be held in Nairobi on 27 and 28 August 2016. TICAD VI is expected to draw more than 6000 participants from governments, international organizations, civil society and private sector organizations. What precisely is TICAD? It was instituted in 1993 to advocate for and foster international partnerships for African development under the joint leadership of Japan, the United Nations and then Global Coalition for Africa. Current co-organizers are Japan, the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank (since TICAD III), the United Nations Office of the Special Adviser on Africa and most recently the African Union Commission (since TICAD V). TICAD came into being in the midst of what has been dubbed as the “lost development decades”, the bleak 80s and 90s, a time when the continent was beset by the painful constraints of structural adjustments programmes, unable to catch a break, and when Japan was in throes of a two-decades-long deflation rut. With the End of the Cold War, major donors with the notable exception of Japan, were questioning the relevance of development aid to Africa. What started out as just another high-level