The African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) renewed their Partnership Agreement on Thursday 28th May 2015 in a joint ceremony held at la Maison de la Chimie in Paris, France on the fringes of the 83rd General Session of the World Assembly of OIE.
In opening the signing ceremony, the Director General of OIE, Dr Bernard Vallat, expressed satisfaction with the fruitful cooperation between the two institutions which dates back to the early 1950s. He cited the collaborative approach successfully used in the past in the eradication of rinderpest and the model used currently in the implementation of the Veterinary Governance (VET-GOV) project as good practices that should be built upon. He reiterated OIE's commitment to support AU-IBAR in resource mobilization to satisfactorily fulfil its continental mandate.
In his remarks, the Director of AU-IBAR, Prof. Ahmed Elsawalhy, expressed delight at the opportunity to formally renew and modernize the agreement on the partnership between AU-IBAR and OIE. He emphasised the long-standing partnership which has grown from strength to strength over the last five decades with many achievements including: the successful eradication of rinderpest by 2010; the support for enhancing the participation of African nations in standards setting organizations; and more recently, the laying of the foundations for the revitalization of Veterinary Services in African countries through the joint implementation of the project for reinforcing Veterinary Governance in Africa (VET-GOV).
Prof. Ahmed Elsawalhy thanked the Director General of OIE, Dr Bernard Vallat for his visionary leadership of OIE over the last 15 years that has seen the expansion of OIE's presence and role in Africa. He underscored that Dr Vallat's legacy will speak for him for many years to come and wished him an equally successful path in his post-retirement endeavours. He congratulated Dr Monique Eloit as the Director-General elect of OIE and looked forward to further strengthening the partnerships between AU-IBAR and OIE during her tenure as Director-General.
Prof. Elsawalhy also introduced AU-IBAR's new initiatives including the Livestock Development Strategy for Africa (LiDeSA) and the Continental Panafrican European Union Support Programme to the LiDeSA (LIVE2AFRICA) and reiterated AU-IBAR's commitment to working closely with OIE to assure the delivery of the expected outcomes.
The areas of co-operation enshrined in the renewed agreement between AU-IBAR and OIE are:
- Knowledge, data and information management and dissemination
- Legislation, standard setting, standard implementation and trade
- Veterinary profession and veterinary education
- Strengthening of veterinary services
- Animal production and farming practices /animal welfare
- Advocacy and policy guidance
The signing ceremony was witnessed by a cross-section of officers from both institutions who were in attendance at the 83rd General Session of OIE that was held from 24th to 29th May 2015.