Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Namibian San Council and Nama Traditional Leaders reach important agreement

On the 15 July 2009 the Namibian San Council reached an important agreement with the Nama Traditional Leaders. The agreement is intended to facilitate negotiations for benefit sharing. It is in part an acknowledgement of shared Traditional Knowledge and resources. This agreement will also help in continued negotiations, particularly in benefit sharing agreements surrounding the Hoodia gordonii.

Community Protocols Presentation, K2C Meeting

Harry Jonas and Johanna von Braun presented on community protocols as an approach to securing communities’ rights in ABS agreements at a meeting hosted by the South African Department of Science and Technology on 6-7 July 2009. The meeting also addressed the Farmer to Pharma initiative and constitutes the formation of a bioprospecting platform for South Africa.
Harry Jonas and Johanna von Braun attended a meeting of over 40 traditional healers at the Vukuzenzele medicinal plants nurseries on the 9th of July in Mpumalanga as part of the work Natural Justice is undertaking the Kruger to Canyons Biosphere Reserve. Natural Justice facilitated information sharing on accessing conservation areas to harvest medicinal plants, protecting TK and becoming registered with the government.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

International Vilm Expert Workshop on Matters related to Traditional Knowledge associated with Genetic resources and the ABS Regime

Kabir Bavikatte on behalf of Natural Justice attended the Expert Workshop on Traditional Knowledge the Isle of Vilm, Germany on 6-10 July 2009. The goal of the expert meeting was to exchange information and discuss practical implications of different views and drafted text options along the parameter of the Annex (UNEP/CBD/ COP/DEC/IX/12 Annex 1) in order to support the rights of indigenous and local communities in the negotiations of the International ABS Regime. In this sense the aim of the workshop was not to reach a consensus on the individual points but rather to have an exchange of technical options and ideas. The Workshop was well attended by leaders of indigenous communities and representatives of the EU and resulted in some useful inputs into the further negotiations of the International ABS Regimes. In particular, the Workshop facilitated the development of operational text on the traditional knowledge which would aid both the indigenous communities and the EU in their preparation for the 8th meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on ABS (ABS 8), due to be held in Montreal, Canada on 9-15 November 2009.