The Expert Meeting on short-listing for selection of institutions as Africa Centres of Excellence (CoE), following the second call for proposals that was launched between 7th June and 6th July 2018, was organized by the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) on the 8-9th August 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya.
The meeting was opened by the Director of AU-IBAR, Professor Ahmed El-Sawalhy. The Director welcomed the experts to AU-IBAR and expressed appreciation for their endeavour to travel and provide technical guidance on the selection process. He recalled the attention of the experts to the decisions of the 2014 Summit of African Heads of States and Governments that requested African Union to establish Africa Centres of Excellence in fisheries and aquaculture. The Director of AU-IBAR admonished the experts that it is therefore crucially important that the selection process is conducted in a professional and credible manner.
The Retired Director of AU-IBAR, Dr. Modibo Traore, chaired the Expert Meeting. In opening remarks, he expressed appreciation to AU-IBAR for the implementation of the recommendations from the Expert Meeting in May 2018 after conclusion of the verifications of short-listed institutions in the first call of expression of interest. He reiterated the critical nature of the process and the potential to promote sustainable fisheries management and responsible aquaculture in Africa. The process, when successfully completed, would address one of the longstanding challenges to evidence based sector governance – the need to strengthen human resources and institutional capacity.
The other experts that participated in the Expert Meeting were Dr. Andrew Baio, Institute of Marine Biology and Oceanography, University of Sierra Leone, Dr. Moustapha Kebe, Fisheries consultant, Mr. Victor Chilamba, from the Ministry of Fisheries and Sea in Angola. The secretary to the Expert Meeting was Dr. Mohamed Seisay, Senior Fisheries Officer, AU-IBAR. Ten institutions submitted applications.
A presentation on the background and objectives of the Expert Meeting was given by Dr. Mohamed Seisay. The overall objective of the Expert Meeting was to carry out short-listing of candidate institutions.
The following were the outcomes of the expert meeting:
- The institutions were evaluated for eligibility against the advertised criteria.
- Assessment, based on agreed scoring criteria, was conducted for the institutions that fulfilled the minimum criteria.
- Recommendations were made for verifications visits by experts to the short-listed institutions in Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, Uganda and Egypt on specified dates.
The Director of AU-IBAR gave closing statement and thanked the experts for successful and profession conclusion of the short-listing exercise. The chair of the expert meeting Dr. Modibo Traore, in his statement, expressed gratitude to AU-IBAR for organizing this important meeting and assured AU-IBAR of their support at all times.