31 Oct 2006

Civil society reiterates call for greater grass roots involvement in Pacific Plan

7:23 pm on 31 October 2006

The president of the Niue Association of NGOs, Hiva Levy, says civil society wants to be a partner with the government.

Mr Levy was speaking after attending the Pacific Regional Civil Society Forum meeting in Fiji which discussed the Pacific Plan and its first progress report.

Representatives from 64 national and regional non-government organisations released a statement calling for a people-centred approach to development, the incorporation of Pacific values, and support for the concept of human security where peoples' basic needs are met.

Mr Levy says civil society needs to be accepted by governments because it has a critical role to play in the region's development.

"For my government, I would like my government to recognise us in terms of a partner. They have given recognition to the private sector in Niue but I also want to give recognition to the civil society as a sector."

Civil society says the plan's vision of greater regional integration will not be realised until it becomes the Pacific Peoples' Plan.