From transport to health, food to construction and textiles, plastics are among the most abundant materials in our economy. Globally, the plastic industry is valued at USD 600 billion and provides employment to millions of people worldwide. But plastic pollution has become a crisis of monumental proportions, with 8 million tons ending up in oceans annually. Around the world, different regions face unique challenges ranging from community awareness to waste and recycling capacity, to weak stakeholder engagement.
The World Bank Group (WBG) aims to integrate Citizen Engagement (CE) systematically into its operations, particularly emphasizing inclusion and empowerment of citizen participation. The COVID-19 pandemic, with its impact on traditional CE mechanisms, prompted a strategic shift towards leveraging digital tools for transparent, inclusive, and accessible CE.
A knowledge exchange and peer learning program were carried out virtually due to COVID-19 restrictions through a series of webinars, bringing together practitioners and representatives of key ministries and public agencies, as well as Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), and Organizations of persons with disabilities (OPDs) from Cameroun, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone.
The governments of Cameroon and Ghana wanted to use oil and gas revenues more effectively to promote economic growth and reduce poverty. They also wanted to improve transparency and accountability in the sector. However, Cameroon and Ghana, as well as many other African countries, have had difficulty managing and sustaining the windfall wealth and savings from their natural resources.