The Common Market of East and Southern Africa region (COMESA) concluded a ten (10) days media workshop as Module on Training for Media Organizations in Managing, Preventing, and Resolving Conflicts Caused by Climate Change in COMESA Region. More than fifty (50) professional journalists from across COMESA region including Somalia and South-Sudan who are not officially a member countries of COMESA network was benefited and trained as Training of Trainers (TOT). The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) was funded the workshop.
The workshop was taking place at Laico Regency hotel in Nairobi, Kenya from November 15-25, 2013. In Somalia Mr. Daud Abdi Daud who heads SOMESHA and the African Federation of Environmental Journalists (AFEJ) and member of the Forum of Climate Change Journalists in East and Southern Africa region (FCC-JESA) and Mr. Mohamed Omar Hussein (Shino) from SOMESHA were invited the workshop in order to represent Somali media fraternity and share the outcome when they back to Somalia.
Climate change has become a serious global concern, which typically threatens the sustainability of the livelihoods of the majority of the population living in the developing countries. In particular, Africa is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The continent is significantly affected by the adverse effects of climate change and these impacts will likely intensify in the future. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Africa’s vulnerability arises from a combination of many factors, including extreme poverty, a high rate of population increase, frequent natural disasters such as droughts and floods, and agricultural systems (both crop and livestock production) that depend heavily on rainfall. Extreme event such as floods and droughts are becoming increasingly frequent and severe with widespread destructive impacts on people and major economic sectors. Africa’s high vulnerability to the negative impacts of climate change and variability is also attributed to its low adaptive capacity.
Climate change has further exacerbated the scarcity of natural resources on the African continent, leading to increased competition over scarce resources and conflicts with regard to access to, and ownership and use of these resources. This has become a serious concern to peace and stability and overall human security in many parts of the continent.
The module is organized in to three chapters. The first chapter deals with climate change and related conflicts, while the second chapter focuses on the power of the news media. The third chapter presents peace or conflict sensitive journalism. Each chapter is further subdivided into sections and sub-sections. On top of this, different activities and case studies under each section are attached to this training module for trainees’ discussions and exercises during the training program. Different supplementary reading materials important to the chapters presented in the module are also attached separately for the trainees to help them acquire additional information.