The 11th Regional Seminar for Labour-Based Practitioners

Seminar theme was 'Integrated labour-based approaches for socio-economic development'

The 11th Regional Seminar for Labour-based Practitioners was successfully held in Mombasa, Kenya, October 2005. The seminar, which drew 250 participants from 19 countries, was at the Whitesands Hotel, Mombasa. It was officially opened by Kenya's Minister for Roads and Public Works Hon. Eng. Raila Odinga and closed by his Assistant, Hon. Eng. Joshua Toro.

The conference was organised by Kenya's Ministry of Roads and Public Works in collaboration with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) ASIST-Africa Programme.

Fifteen papers were presented and discussed in sessions on community participation and performance based contracting; impact monitoring and evaluation; and environmental sustainability. The seminar also discussed training, research, development and sustainable financing and resource allocation.

The objective of the seminar was to facilitate the sharing of ideas and experiences on the application of labour-based approaches in infrastructure development while identifying the impact of the same for socio-economic development.

A statement (PDF 104 Kb) issued by the seminar delegates resolved that there was need to mainstream and up-scale the use of labour-based approaches in the provision of infrastructure and related services in order to create wealth particularly among the poor communities. This, the parley resolved, would be achieved through the creation of an enabling environment, building capacity and allocating resources.

"There is need to create an enabling environment for implementation of labour based approaches by impressing upon governments to speedily continue developing and implementing relevant policies, amending and enforcing legislation for the same and developing appropriate contract conditions to compel labour-based approaches contracting for all suitable infrastructure programmes" the statement read in part.

Delegates also resolved there was urgent need to build capacity by integrating and mainstreaming of labour-based approaches in tertiary institution curricula and supporting labour based research practitioners and institutions to embark on research and development.

On resource allocation, the conference resolved there was need for governments to ensure access of credit facilities in order to ensure sustainable access of funds for labour-based infrastructure development works.

Among those who addressed the seminar were Mr Ali Ibrahim, ILO Area Office Director for Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Somalia and Ms Maria Stridsman, Head, Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), Nairobi who gave the key note paper during the opening session.

The delegates voted that the next 12th Regional Seminar for Labour based Practitioners will be held in South Africa.