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Statements, Topnews

19. November 2018

STATEMENT BY DR JT PITSWANE, ALTERNATE RESIDENT REPRESENTATIVE OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA, INTERNATIONAL ATOMIC ENERGY AGENCY, TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE AND COOPERATION COMMITTEE, 19 NOVEMBER 2018, VIENNA, AUSTRIA 

EVALUATION OF TECHNICAL COOPERATION ACTIVITIES IN 2018

AGENDA ITEM: 3

Madam Chair,

My delegation wishes to associate itself with the statements delivered on behalf of the African Group and the G77 and China respectively. I would like to make the following remarks in our national capacity.

Madam Chair,

South Africa welcomes the report of the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) on the Evaluation of Technical Cooperation activities in 2018. The regular evaluation of the implementation of TC activities is necessary to improve management efficiency, programme effectiveness and to enhance accountability in a sustainable manner

South Africa is pleased to note that the evaluation of the TC activities is reported to be inclusive in nature and closely involves programme stakeholders throughout the process. We also share the view that indeed the evaluation process facilitates open dialogue on the programme implementation and ultimately enhances capacity building within organizations. In this regard, we encourage the Secretariat to continue to apply this approach when conducting future evaluations of the TC projects. Moreover, we implore the Agency to apply evaluations across all major programmes in a balanced manner.

South Africa further noted, Madam Chair, that in 2018 the Office of Internal Oversight Services formulated 30 recommendations related to the TC activities and that the recommendations and their timescales have been wholly accepted by the Secretariat. My delegation encourages the Secretariat to fully and timely implement all the OIOS’ recommendations including those that emanated from previous evaluations. We further note that there are no overdue TC related actions. South Africa acknowledges that stemming from our Country-Level Evaluation and Audit (CLEA) in 2017; we have nine out of eleven recommendations in progress. South Africa commits to working with the Secretariat in whatever way possible to ensure that they are closed timeously.

It is imperative to our developmental goals that all TC related activities are effective, efficient and equally sustainable, if we as a country are to attain our Sustainable Development Goals. One such avenue to do so is through cooperation with the Agency within our Country Programme Frameworks.

Country Programme Frameworks serve an important role for Member states as they provide a solid frame of reference for technical cooperation between a Member State and the Agency; by tailoring the TC programmes of Member States to work within national development plans to address specific challenges and priorities. South Africa notes that our CPF expired in 2016 and that the 2018 - 2023 CPF is currently outstanding. South Africa reiterates its commitment to finalizing the framework without further delay; as this framework is also a basis for which the OIOS and the Agency can monitor its support to Member States and its implementation of TC programmes.

South Africa appreciates that across all OIOS reports completed in 2018 and in preceding years it has been reported that capacity building activities have filled pertinent knowledge gaps, with the enhanced capacity being relevantly applied by the participants upon their return to their workplaces and organisations. As a developing country, capacity building remains key to our national priorities and we applaud the transfer of this knowledge.

Madam Chair,

South Africa notes the CLEA missions that were conducted in Cambodia, Jordan and Sri Lanka; as well as the field missions to Kenya and Sudan. Further noting that the first full cycle of the CLEAs has been completed, we encourage OIOS to use their ‘lessons learnt’ going forward. South Africa hopes that the future cycles of evaluations will have clear criteria on how themes, countries and regions are chosen.

Madam Chair,

We are meeting this week on the eve of the Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Science and Technology to be held on 28 to 30 November. South Africa commends the Ambassadors of Costa Rica and Japan as the co-Chairs of the Conference for their sterling work and leadership. Similarly, we express our appreciation to the Secretariat for their diligent work in undertaking the necessary preparations in this regard.

This Conference, the first of its kind will, among others, highlight and put into sharp focus the undoubted significance and contribution of nuclear science, technology and their applications toward the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Madam Chair,

Finally, we congratulate and welcome Mr Paul Manning, as the new Director of OIOS. South Africa hopes that he will continue to build on the good foundation laid by his predecessor; and that he and his team will be supported in order to carry out their mandate in a transparent manner.

With these remarks, my delegation takes note of the report on Evaluation of the Technical Cooperation Activities in 2018 as contained in document GOV/2018/45.

Thank you.

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