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Communiqué - The First Reinforcing Animal Health Services in Somalia (RAHS) Project Steering Committee Meeting

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© 2016 AU-IBAR. Group photo of Members of the RAHS project Steering Committee.© 2016 AU-IBAR. Group photo of Members of the RAHS project Steering Committee.22nd June 2016, Sheraton Hotel, Djibouti.

Introduction

The project for Reinforcing Animal Health Services in Somalia (RAHS) was designed to build on the achievements and broaden the impacts of previous EU funded animal health interventions recognising the vital role of livestock trade in supporting livelihoods and the inadequacy of public institutions in Somalia. The RAHS project aims to strengthen the policy, regulatory and operational environments for animal health services delivery, enhance public private and community partnerships to enhance access to services as well as strengthen livestock disease surveillance and control systems in Somalia.

The Overall Objective is to improve the livelihoods and resilience to natural disasters and shocks of livestock dependent households in Somalia and the Specific objective is to enhance the quality, access and sustainability of animal health services in Somalia.

The project has three expected results as follows:

  • Result 1: Capacity of Public institutions to deliver and regulate animal health services strengthened
  • Result 2: Public, private and community partnerships in animal health services delivery strengthened
  • Result 3: Surveillance and control systems for trade sensitive diseases strengthened

The RAHS project is being implemented over a period of 36 months from September 2013 under the coordination of the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in partnership with COOPI, Terra Nuova and the Line Ministries responsible for livestock at the Federal Government of Somalia level and the different Somali regional governments.

The first RAHS project steering committee was convened to review the technical and financial performance of the project and to discuss and agree on the work plan and budgets of the project for the following months. The meeting was held on 22nd June 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel in Djibouti, back-to-back with that for the project for Enhancing Somali Livestock Trade (ESOLT).

The Objectives of the Steering Committee Meeting:

  1. To review and approve project progress reports, including technical and financial reports
  2. To discuss and approve the work plan and the budget of the project
  3. To make recommendations that aim to improve the performance of the project and to facilitate the overall coherent project implementation, including monitoring and evaluation;
  4. To strengthen coordination and information sharing with complementary interventions in Somalia;
  5. To ensure the full participation and coordination of stakeholders in the implementation of the RAHS project activities.

Recommendations

Considering:

  • The role of RAHS as a project in consolidating the long-term support of the EU to the Somali livestock sector and the need to draw from its experiences to guide the planning of future actions as part of building the future Livestock sector in Somalia,
  • The important role of the project in improving the quality and access of animal health services and ensuring the sustainability of their delivery
  • The need for better collaboration, coordination, complementarity and partnerships between the public and private sectors and noting the value of partnerships between the implementing partners (AU-IBAR and INGO’s) in building the legacy of the RAHS Project within the Somali livestock sector
  • The challenges faced by the Somali line Ministries to attract resources and retain qualified staff
  • The remaining project activities, project budget balances and the time frame for implementation
  • The need to share lessons learned in integrating the RAHS project interventions between the different implementing partners

The Steering Committee:

  • Lauds the European Union for sustained support to the Somali livestock sector and for the payment of the outstanding annual contributions of Somalia to the OIE made through the RAHS project and thanks the EU for its continued support and commitment
  • Endorses the Steering Committee as an organ for building stronger collaboration and ensuring inclusivity of stakeholders in project planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation.
  • Commits to utilising the SC as a forum for sharing responsibilities and ensuring fruitful work
  • Recognises the need to better engage the private sector and embed the project activities within the line Ministries for sustainability and thus to seek a sustainable model of engaging both the public and the private sectors in Animal Health services delivery
  • Urges the line ministries to progressively allocate funds to the livestock sector and sustainably embrace the various livestock sector bodies such as the Veterinary Boards and Veterinary inspection posts.

The Steering Committee Recommends:

  • Extension of the RAHS Project implementation for a period of 9 months through a no cost extension
  • Adoption of the SC TORs with an amendment that provides for a Somali institution to co-chair the SC as will be advised by the Directors General of the line ministries represented at the 1st SC Meeting.
  • The Director General (DG) MLFR to advise the SC on the correct political position in addressing the Federal member states and their representation on the SC.
  • The adoption of modalities for contracting the private associations through the respective line ministries as a mechanism for strengthening the coordination, supervision and regulatory roles of the line Ministries and recommends the piloting of cost recovery of Animal Health Services delivery in Somalia within the scope of the RAHS project.
  • The project implementing team to articulate an exit strategy that defines the options for the sustainability of project interventions in liaison with the Line Ministries and stakeholders
  • The DG MLFR and Terra Nuova to finalise the criteria used to select the locations for the rehabilitation/construction of satellite laboratories and share these with members of the SC
  • The use of the project visibility and communication strategy to highlight and package the main achievements of the project and its relevance in responding to the needs of the Somali livestock sector and guiding future interventions.
  • That the strategies reviewed/developed through the RAHS project must be linked to what they are intended to achieve through support for appropriate activities. The strategies should also assist the line Ministries and other partners in the Somali livestock sector to orient actions and define present and long term priorities.
  • Endorse the RAHS work plan and recommended that the project implementing team provides greater segregation of budgets against activities and includes any proposed amendment of the budget. This to be submitted to members of the SC for confirmation and endorsement by email.
  • The 4th technical progress and financial reports to be circulated by email for final endorsement by the SC members within one week.

Date and time of the next steering committee meeting: To be held on 31st August 2016 back to back with that for the ESOLT project in Nairobi.