A one-day meeting was convened by the African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) to formally establish the Coordination Committee of the Africa Platform for Animal Welfare (APAW) review and endorse the 4-year program entitled Improving the Governance of Animal Welfare in Africa (GAWA) on 27th April 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya.
The Coordination Meeting was attended by around 80 participants comprising CVOs and Representatives from 41 AUC Member States (MSs) namely Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso Cameroon, CAR, Cape Verde, Chad, Comoros, Congo Brazzaville, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, DR Congo, Egypt, Eritrea, Gabon Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau Kenya; Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Mauritania, Mauritius, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia , Uganda and Zimbabwe . The meeting also included representatives from RECSs, ECCAS, IGAD, SADC and UMA Representatives from FAO, OIE, the University of Nairobi the EISMV (Dakar), The Brooke Hospital for Animals, World Horse Welfare, The Donkey Sanctuary, World Animal Protection, Africa Network for Animal Welfare, Pan African Animal Welfare Alliance (PAAWA), International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), World animal Net, the United States Department for Agriculture (USDA); Animal welfare experts and AU-IBAR staffs.
The Objective the Meeting
The overall objective of the meeting will be to formally establish and officially launch the Coordination Committee of the Africa Platform for Animal Welfare in Africa (CC-APAW).
The specific objectives are the followings:
- To update the CVOs on animal welfare agenda in Africa
- To officially launch the CC-APAW
- To validate the AW 4-year program titled "Improving Animal Welfare Governance in Africa"
- To adopt the 2018 annual work plan of CCAWA
- To agree on the way forward.
The Opening Ceremony
Two speeches were given at the opening ceremony. The Director of AU-IBAR Prof. Ahmed Elsawalhy welcomed the participants acknowledging the CEO the World Animal Protection Mr Steve McIvor and the CEO of The Brooke Hospitals for Animals Mrs. Petra Ingram. He emphasized that coordination and partnership among stakeholders was crucial in advancing the animal welfare agenda in Africa. He called for both financial and technical support from partners to effectively implement the proposed 4-yesar program. He concluded by recognizing the exemplary partnership between the World Animal Protection, The Brooke Hospital for Animals, the Donkey Sanctuary and the World Horse Welfare in the completion of the AWSA and program development.
The meeting was officially opened by the CVO of Kenya, Dr.Obadiah Njagi on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Kenya. He also acknowledged the high-level representation of the CEO of the World Animal Protection and the CEO of the Brooke Hospital for Animals who are our Guest of Honors and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs), the high number of MS (over 41), the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). On behalf of his fellow CVOs from the AU MS, he kindly requested AU-IBAR and partners for support/assistance to mobilize resources (human, financial etc) for effective implementation of the program. He hoped that the program will be translated into policies and strategies to programmes and projects and taking them to the field where animal welfare interventions are badly needed to mitigate concerns by stakeholders and doing what is right for our animals.
Proceedings of the Meeting
The meeting conducted over a period of a day enabled the participants to address various topics highlighted in the agenda:
- Workshop objectives & expected outputs
- Strategy Development process
- Africa Animal Welfare Strategy and the Action Plan;
- Partner Statement
- Review and adoption of APAW, Structure and introduction of platform members
- Review and adoption of the Work plan 2018-2019
- Preparation of the General Assembly of APAW
Fruitful discussions were held to gather more ideas/inputs/comments to nourish the proposed 4-year program.
Following open and fruitful deliberations, the following was adopted:
- The Africa Platform for Animal Welfare (APAW) Governance and structure reviewed and adopted; before the GA
- The 4-program entitled Improving the Governance of Animal Welfare in Africa (GAWA) adopted;
- The theme the General Assembly of APAW "Compelling Cases for Consciousness on Animal Welfare in Africa"
Recommendations and way forward
It was recognised that Animal welfare is, given the value of animal resources to Africa, is integral to sustainable livelihoods.
To Member States and RECs
- RECs and MS to be guided and supported by AU-IBAR so they can develop and domesticate the strategy in their national and regional plans.
- MS and RECS with support of AU-IBAR and Partners to establish animal welfare networks at national and regional level and integrate to existing regional and national health and production networks
To AU-IBAR, OIE and FAO
- To assist RECs and MSs in mainstreaming AW in their national and regional policies, strategies, programs and projects
- To initiate the implementation of the action plan and the program
- To develop and dissemination effective awareness and communication strategy
To Partners (EU, WAP, BROOKE, DS, WHW, IFAW.)
- To collaborate and with joint effort mobilise resources, both financial and technical support to AU-IBAR RECs and MSs in implementing this continental AW governance program for Africa
- To continue and sustain the strong built partnership in advancing AW agenda in Africa
The meeting adopted the APAW operational guidelines with minor amendments for consideration and endorsement in the General Assembly.
A clear roadmap with clear roles and responsibilities will be developed within the next two weeks.
The need to have strong a fully integrated approach to animal welfare, that includes the comprehensive representation of wildlife issues in this agenda.
Finally the meeting recognized and appreciated with great thanks the partner statements and their commitments/engagements to continue championing in close collaboration and cooperation with AU-IBAR the AW agenda in Africa.
Finally, the meeting commended the leadership of AU-IBAR and the exemplary partnership between AU-IBAR, World Animal Protection, the Brooke Hospital for Animals, the Donkey Sanctuary, World Horse Welfare, African Network for animal welfare (ANAW), FAO, OIE and others in mainstreaming animal welfare agenda in Africa. Participants recognized that this meeting has shown that Africa has definitively made remarkable strides on animal welfare and developed a comprehensive program as well as the Coordination Committee of the Africa Platform for Animal Welfare (APAW-CC).