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The Bamako Appeal - Process

François Houtart Answers to questions asked by CACIM List of Signatories

The Bamako Appeal is an initiative taken by the WFA – the World Forum for Alternatives, headed by eminent Egyptian economist Samir Amin and eminent Belgian historian François Houtart. The document says that the Appeal itself was drafted by subcommittees.

This document was then placed at a meeting called by the WFA and (according to the Third World Forum website (external link)) by the Forum for Another Mali, the Third World Forum (also headed by Samir Amin), and ENDA-Third World (external link), on January 18 in Bamako, Mali, the day ahead of the Bamako Social Forum that was held during January 19-23 this year (2006). It was then also presented at the World Social Forum held in Caracas, Venezuela, during January 24-29, and perhaps especially at the Social Movements Assembly that took place there.

Some reports suggest that the Appeal was perhaps endorsed by the Social Movements Assembly at Caracas, but this is not clear. The English version that we have posted here was circulated by Samir Amin on the NIGD (Network Institute for Global Democratisation (external link)) listserve only after that, on February 7. And then, by a process that is also not yet clear, the Appeal – which in this version has no signatures to it, and many had understood was still open for discussion – has now appeared on the Third World Forum website, open to signatures. This status and possibility is not however mentioned on the other websites where it is posted.

The manner in which the Bamako meeting was organised has also been questioned by members of the World Social Forum International office (Antonio Martins (ATTAC), Chico Whitaker (CBJP), and Sergio Haddad (ABONG)), in a formal letter to the organisers dt January 17 2006. (Summary : The meeting was organised just ahead of the Bamako Forum and its invitation letter suggested that this was the opening event, whereas in reality it was not only separate but also open only to a very select group, which contradicted the spirit of the Forum as being an open space).

Since, we are not yet fully aware of the status of the document, or of the process it has gone through to reach where it has, and so we wrote to Samir Amin and François Houtart to get more information. François Houtart of CETRI (Centre Tricontinentale, Belgium) and of the WFA (World Forum for Alternatives), the organisation that is leading this initiative, wrote back to us on March 23 2006. Please read his answers. He also provided a copy of the list of signatories to the Appeal.

Contributors to this page: System Administrator and madhuresh .
Page last modified on Wednesday 10 of May, 2006 15:06:34 IST by System Administrator.

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