Nairobi/Londong: 5,000 Mathari residents in Nairobi on Saturday attended a rally to call for governments to fairly fund essential services, honour their aid commitments and crack down on tax dodging.

NairobiThe demonstrations – part of the action/2015 movement – come on the eve of the third Financing for Development Summit in Addis Ababa (13-16 July, 2015), at which heads of state and finance ministers are being called upon to fund the next 15 years of Sustainable Development and long-term action on climate change.

Action/2015, one of the world?s largest civil society campaigns, is leading demonstrations, rallies, public meetings and other action in more than 70 countries across all continents, including almost every African country. The campaign is calling on government leaders to use the summit to tackle tax injustice, fund fairly with a focus on the marginalised and those living in poverty and keep their promises.

The Mathare event was part of more than 70 other demonstrations that took place around cities of the world bringing together tens-of-thousands of campaigners backed by leaders such as Desmond Tutu, Malala Yousafzaiand Haile Gebrselassie.

?In all my years of campaigning I have never seen a year blessed with so much opportunity to make the world safer, healthier and fairer. With the agreement of a new climate treaty and new poverty goals, 2015 can herald a new era. We must not waste this chance. By uniting across continents, faiths and generations, we can make sure world leaders hear and act on our calls for them to set ambitious goals for the future, goals which will bring about positive change for people everywhere and for the precious planet we inhabit,? said Emeritus Archbishop Desmond Tutu in a statement issued ahead of the rallies.

Malala Yousafzai, student, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and co-founder of the Malala Fund said: ?Leaders of the 21st century must deliver on their promises to invest in the future and start investing in books, education and hope, rather than in weapons, war and conflicts.? said Malala. ?Only education will unlock the potential of millions of my sisters and brothers. They are brilliant young minds who will become, if given the chance of 12 years of quality primary and secondary education, the next great scientists, engineers or teachers or anything they want. Getting millions of girls into school seems impossible. But like my story, it is not. What we have seen is that when we choose to act, girls in the darkest corners of the world can be reached with the light of education.?

In Pretoria, South Africa, young people from across the country will take part in a demonstration outside the Finance Ministry to highlight economic inequality. In India, thousands of young people will lead mobilisations in 15 states.

Two-time Olympic Champion Haile Gebrselassie said:?These are the people, from north and south, rich and poor, powerful and marginalised who I stand with ? they share a common belief that as ordinary people they have the power to push governments to agree to and then make the extraordinary happen – in fact, they know that this is the only way it?s ever happened.?

Events were also planned in Oslo and London, among other cities in industrialised countries, where activists will call for promises of aid made more than 40 years ago to be met; and for a crackdown on the tax dodging that robs developing countries of billions of dollars every year.



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