Sustainable Development Goals
World leaders from 193 countries came together at the UN General Assembly and adopted the “Transforming Our World: 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” (Agenda 2030) on 25th September 2015. The Agenda came into effect upon expiry of the Millennium Development Goals on 1 January 2016, and will run through December 31, 2030. The Agenda 2030 spells out the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets which will guide the development agenda through the next fifteen years. The new Agenda builds upon the achievements of the MDGs and focuses on the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental pillars.
The 2030 Agenda envisages a world of universal respect for human rights, equality and nondiscrimination, and the overriding message of the new Agenda is “to leave no one behind. The SDGs are the result of a three-year-long transparent, participatory process inclusive of all stakeholders and people’s voices. The Agenda 2030 is universal, integrated and transformative and aims at spurring action that will end poverty and build a more sustainable world over the next 15 years.
The Agenda 2030 consists of (i) a declaration, (ii) 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) and 169 targets, (iii) the means for implementation and renewed global partnership and (iv) a framework for review and follow-up. The SDG declaration resolves, between now and 2030, to end poverty and hunger everywhere; to combat inequalities within and among countries; to build peaceful, just and inclusive societies; to protect human rights and promote gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls; and to ensure the lasting protection of the planet and its natural resources. It also resolves to create conditions for sustainable, inclusive and sustained economic growth, shared prosperity and decent work for all, taking into account different levels of national development and capacities.
As the global development community embraces the SDGs, the UN Country Team in Lesotho is once more having a distinct responsibility to support the Government of Lesotho (GoL) and other national stakeholders in rolling out a comprehensive set of global development goals at the national and sub-national levels. In the spirit of forging a strong and inclusive partnerships for the effective implementation of the 2030 Agenda, a SDG Rollout Plan was developed aimed at guiding and supporting the UN system, the GoL civil society, private sector, academia and all other development partners in Lesotho to successfully implement the SDGs.
The UN Country Team in Lesotho has since early 2016 been supporting the GoL in localizing and mainstreaming the SDGs through planning and capacity building. The process of domestication of SDGs in Lesotho began in 2016 with the first stages of advocacy and sensitization for various stakeholders such as the Cabinet, parliamentarians, districts, ministries, youth and CSOs. The process of mainstreaming the SDGs into the National Strategic Development Plan 2012/13 -2016/17 and Agenda 2063 was also initiated in 2016.The UN system is also supporting the country in developing the benchmarks, indicators and monitoring and reporting frameworks to facilitate the country in monitoring and reporting on SDG progress, the institutional structure and financing for SDGs, among others.
Given the need to simultaneously plan and implement the SDGs, the NSDP II and the new UNDAF in Lesotho, the UNCT Lesotho is planning to provide coordinated UN support to the Government of Lesotho in the alignment and roll-out of the SDGs at the country-level. Specifically, the UNCT aims to strengthen national capacity to localize and mainstream SDGs into national, subnational and sectoral development plans and strategies for planning, implementation, monitoring and reporting, partnership building and financing of the SDGs.