Multi-Stakeholder Dialogue a Farce
Bali, May 28, 2002 – NGOs participating in the multi-stakeholder meetings at the PrepComm IV of the WSSD in Bali have deep concerns about how the process is going, especially following the first dialogue session yesterday 27/5/2002 on Governance:
- The majority of country delegations did not attend the session, especially delegations from developing countries where issues of governance, especially that of multinational corporations, should be of a major concern.
- Government delegations, especially the United States, did not even address Civil Society concerns and deflected the debate by giving a general position statement.
- The text in question was being amended by governments even while major stakeholders representing civil society were giving their input.
The major theme put forward by governments in the WSSD process seems to be that of “partnership”. It is also one of the major themes in the text proposed by the chairman of the Summit. As a minimum required for partnership, civil society expects all government delegations to attend the dialogue and respect the concerns of the other partners that include the major stakeholders: NGOs, women, youth, labor, indigenous people, farmers, business, and local authorities.