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The end of year provides a moment to reflect on achievements made within that year. In terms of the ACCA, 2016 has been a year with positive developments for our relatively young Coalition. Undoubtedly, the first in-person ACCA Steering Committee meeting and the 3rd ACCA General Assembly were both important and fruitful ACCA events during which much progress was made for our Coalition.

ACCA member organisations continue to make ACCA’s presence felt at important business and human rights events, some of which included the 3rd annual national conference on economic, social and cultural rights (14-15 September), the Second session of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with respect to Human Rights in Geneva (24-28 October), the 10th Conference of International Non-Governmental Organisations and Civil Society Organisations accredited to the Francophonie (2-4 November), the UN Forum on Business and Human Rights (14-16 November), Development Futures: An African Roundtable on Extractives, Mega Infrastructure and Women’s Right of Consent in Nairobi (30 November-2 December).

We should be constantly mindful of ACCA’s raison d’etre: supporting African communities and individuals whose human rights are adversely impacted daily by the activities of corporations, both multi-national and domestic. Due to the diverse nature of ACCA’s membership, we can play this role in many different ways. As the ACCA Secretariat, we are committed to assisting our members in achieving these goals through the work that they do.

2016 also marked the launch of the new ACCA website, with an aim to raise awareness around the work of the ACCA, and give exposure to ACCA members and their work. With this in mind, I would like to call upon ACCA member organisations to send us blogs/news pieces/stories showcasing your amazing work with local communities. Success stories are always welcome, and in cases where the end result may not have been as desirable as intended – please feel free to still send it, as it may inform our strategies going forward!

We hope that you enjoy this edition of the ACCA Newsletter. Please remember that you are always welcome to engage with the Secretariat, the ACCA Steering Committee, and the membership more broadly. With 2017 on the horizon, we need to build on this momentum to ensure that the ACCA is a Coalition on which people on the African continent and others interested in the ACCA can depend.

Wishing you all a wonderful festive season and a happy new year 2017!

Damian Oakes