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Theme: Theme: Consultation and Engagement: The Future of Rural Development Policy

o National Prosperity through Modern Rural Policy: Competitiveness and well-being in rural regions
o New Approaches to Rural Policy: Lessons from Around the World
o Developing Rural Policies to Meet the Needs of a Changing Africa
o Rural Investment Policy: Partnering with CSI

This conference brings together, for the first time, rural policy officials and leading policy analysts from around African countries and the globe to examine promising new policy options for boosting economic performance in rural areas. Globalization is causing widespread consolidation in traditional rural industries, leaving many rural regions throughout the world looking for new sources of economic growth. The need for new rural policy approaches is underscored by the continued high cost of existing rural policies. This conference will highlight the need for new policy options, review the principles underpinning new policy approaches, consultation and engagement and the lessons that can be learned from a wave of new policy initiatives in African countries.

The conference aims to bring out the following:

  • An improved monitoring and evaluation framework will allow better information to be available to inform decisions over the impact and effectiveness of the programme.
  • Developing, consulting and engaging current, realistic, sustainable rural policies for different rural regions.
  • Fostering partnerships to drive rural policies
  • Establish a team that can drive new rural policies within the framework of the overall objectives of the agricultural and rural sector, objectives that are specifically and directly related to emerging farmers role in agricultural production and processing. These objectives should be clearly stated, realistic, feasible, measurable in terms of their success and action-oriented.
  • Establishing a communication and information system among the various parties – national (governmental and non-governmental), regional and international. This assumes a capacity for data management and research and the establishment of networks.
  • Be in a position to change the orientation of policies and to modify its procedures so that rural women are truly taken into account in policy-making and planning processes and in current or future development programmes and projects;

Venue: Durban ICC, South Africa
Dates: 23-24 May 2018

Mrs Thamo Mzobe
Chief Executive Officer
National Development Agency
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    Mrs Thamo Mzobe is the Chief Executive Officer of the National Development Agency. She has occupied various portfolios in her career path as a teacher, School Head of Department, School Principal, Deputy Director in KZN Legislature, Chief of staff at Social Development, Executive member of the KZN Provincial Governing Council for the African Peer Review Mechanism, Director for the Non Profit Organisations Unit at Social Development, Senior Manager for Stakeholder Relations, Senior Manager for Cooperatives Development, National Steering Committee member for the development of the Code of Good Practice for Non Profit Organisations in South Africa.

Tshepang Mosiea
Department of Science and Technology
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    Tshepang Mosiea is a Director for Science and Technology for Science Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Human Settlements in the Department of Science and Technology in South Africa, he is an accredited Project Management Professional (PMP) and a PRINCE2 practitioner. He has been employed as a General Manager: Programme and Fund Management Portfolio at the National Urban Renewal and Housing Construction Agency (NURCHA), where he was responsible for setting up business processes and procedures to manage the programme and fund management portfolio, establishing and operationalise portfolio management governance processes, develop and implement programme management resource models and programme team ways of working to successfully deliver the infrastructure, housing delivery, fund management, bucket system eradication, contractor support and development, as well as the institutional capacity development amongst municipalities and provincial housing departments through implementing change management initiatives, mapping business processes, and establishing portfolio, programmes and project management units on behalf of clients.

Bongani Magongo
Executive Director
National Development Agency
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    Mr Bongani Magongo is the Executive Director: Development Management & Research at the National Development Agency for the past 4 years. He holds a BSc, from North Carolina Central University, USA and Mater of Public Health from University of Witwatersrand, SA. He has been a researcher for over 25 years, has published over 20 research articles and monographs. In 2016, he published a book titled: Enhancing civil society participation in the South African development agenda: The role of civil society organisations. Previously a lecture and researcher at the Centre for Health Policy at the University of the Witwatersrand.

Peter Setou
Chief Executive
Vumelana Advisory Fund
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    Peter Setou holds a Law Degree from the University of Western Cape (1990) and did an Executive Leadership Programe with the University of Cape Town. He joined Vumelana as its Chief Executive in 2016. Vumelana is a non-profit organisation that helps beneficiaries of the land reform programme put their land to profitable use by establishing commercially viable partnerships between communities and investors. Setou is a member of the Barokologadi claimant community, and in 2012 he co-founded Stanford Holdings – a company that helps land reform beneficiaries use their land effectively and has been involved in a wide range of land reform projects with a number of communities and as a partner to the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR).

Unati Speirs
Group Chairman
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    Unati Speirs is the CEO of a food and beverage company BulkChefs and the Group Chairman of AgriConsult Consortium, which is a group of private companies in Military Supply, Biofuel,Biotechnology, Food and Poultry Production. Unati Speirs is a PhD candidate and holds a Master degree in Science specializing in Agroprocessing and Food Science. She is currently the the AfricaBio South African Bio-Tech Ambassador, AfricaBio is an international Biotech member based organization. She was the national chair for of the South African Hemp Foundation, she served as a member of council for Genetic Modified Foods Council Of South Africa before joining a Development Bank to Be a Head of banking in Agriculture, Agro-processing and Forestry at Industrial Development Corporation. She served in the National Task Team on Biofuels, and has been part of the United Nations UNEP and FAO Agri-Food task team in Rome for since 2012. She says her biggest achievement to date is being elected as the first Africa female Vice President of the International Sugar Organization in London a position that was never held by a woman from an African country for the first time when she was elected in Antigua Guatemala in 2015.

Susannah Farr
Gold Youth Development Agency
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    Susannah Farr is an Ashoka fellow and 2016 Social Entrepreneur category winner in the Regional Business Women Awards. She was a finalist in the Global Citizen Award in 2017 for innovation and impact in poverty alleviation. She is a visionary leader, committed to finding innovative solutions to address the youth education and unemployment crisis amongst the most vulnerable. She holds an MPhil from University of Stellenbosch. Susannah’s involvement in youth social behaviour-change and skills-access led her to pioneering gold-youth in 2004. In striving to build sustainable scalability, Susannah established gold-enterprises in 2011, designed as a youth job creation vehicle. Programme of Strengthening Right for People Working the Land, otherwise known as the 50/50 Programme.

Nkanyiso Katleho Ngubane
Dukathole Youth for Economic Social & Rural Development
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    Nkanyiso is a Co-Founder, Chairperson and Marketing Manager of Dukathole Youth, and passionate about agriculture. She completed her Diploma in Agriculture (crop specialization) at Cedara Collage of Agriculture where she was a member of SRC. She has also done Project Management course and a B Tech Degree in Agricultural Management. She has worked for the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and served as a technical advisor for three years and several farms as a farm manager. She is an active, strong-willed young woman with great vision and leadership skills which equip her to be an efficient and a reliable leader. She has played a massive role on her team Dukathole with her good marketing skills.

Rosetta Stander
C.E.O | Societas for Early Child Development
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    Rosetta has been involved in economic and human development for the past 20 years. In 1996 she opened a branch of a youth development organization in the Northern Cape, achieving an 80% success rate for helping previously disadvantaged youth enter the formal job market. In 2007 she founded Zimele Developing Community Self-Reliance. Over the next 10 years the organization assists 5000 women in rural KwaZulu Natal to start their own micro-enterprises, so achieving financial security and independence. In 2017 she was invited by Societas for Early Childhood Development to be the CEO with the brief to develop the organization in a national fund for early child development.

Nuttah Mumbi
Savvy Club | Zambia
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    Nuttah is the Founder of Savvy Club, a Financial and Digital Literacy Club. She’s a women empowerment advocate and was the only Zambian 2016- 2017 Global Champion for Change at UN Women Empower Women. Nuttah, a Professional Civil Engineer, is also an alumna of the YALI Regional Leadership Centre Southern Africa. She holds a Post- graduate diploma in Project Management and a Bachelor of Engineering in Civil Engineering. Nuttah is currently Deputy Director of Works at Chilubi District Council, Zambia.

Thomas de Ridder
Agricultural Development Specialist
Manstrat Consulting
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    Thomas de Ridder has 16 years’ experience in local, regional and rural economic development, social, economic and environmental sustainability management, agricultural development and farmer and entrepreneurial support programs, from local or project level to national or policy level. Recently he steered his career towards software development in and digital transformation of the above fields. He obtained the degrees B.Sc Biological Science, B.Sc Geography & Psychology, B.Sc. Hons Environmental Science & Geography, finalising a Masters in Urban and Regional Planning, and completed several short courses in business, e-commerce, agriculture, health, data analysis, computer science and information technology.

Jonathan Tumwebaze
Teaching and Research Faculty
Uganda Christian University
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    Mr. Jonathan Tumwebaze is a Research and Teaching Faculty with the Department of Development at Uganda Christian University (UCU)-Mukono. He holds a BA (Hon) in Development Studies and an MA (Hon) in Research and Public Policy (Masters) both from Uganda Christian University. He is a recognized Researcher and Mentor at the Honors College Leadership Program at UCU. Jonathan is a committed member of the South African Social Protection Experts Network (SASPEN) where he has presented independent and collaborative research papers on social protection. He currently lecturers Participatory Development and Community Dynamics to undergraduate and graduate students at UCU-Mukono.

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