The Standard Methods and Procedures in Animal Health (SMP-AH) recently organised a cross-border meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to initiate development of binding agreements between Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somaliland and Somalia on Animal Health to facilitate service delivery along their common borders. The purpose is to strengthen cooperation and partnership between countries along bilateral borders to address the common challenges preventing countries and livestock communities trading across the bilateral borders within the Somali cluster. The Memorandum of Understanding develops an agenda to guide implementation that lays the foundation to facilitate prevention and control of various transboundary animal diseases across borders in the Somali cluster.
Dr Yismashewa from Ethiopia emphasized the need for countries in the IGAD region to prevent livestock trade bans in order to enhance livestock trade in the region. “a key challenge is the prevention of widespread disease outbreaks in the region brought about by differing animal health measures implemented by various countries within the IGAD region” said Dr Yismashewa. “I call on countries to strengthen collaboration in the control of transboundary animal diseases and in the prevention of emerging new diseases,” he added. The meeting was attended by 36 participants from Ethiopia, Djibouti, Somalia, AU-IBAR, IGAD Centre for Pastoral Areas and Livestock Development (ICPALD) and Oxfam.
To reduce animal health risks associated with trade in Livestock and livestock products in the Great Horn of Africa (GHoA), USAID funded AU-IBAR to implement Standard Method and Procedures (SMP-AH) in Animal Health project. This will ensure livestock meet health quality standards and certification for regional and international livestock markets. To do this the project has built capacity to prevent the widespread presence of diseases that do not recognise borders.
To strengthen more ties AU-IBAR hosted a delegation from USAID to discuss achievements of the project and bidding off Mr. Isaac Thendiu, the outgoing Project Manager at USAID. The USAID delegation was headed by Mr Steve Orr (fifth from the right), of the Regional Economic Integration Office of USAID Kenya & East Africa Mission, who was received by Prof Ahmed Elsawalhy, the Director AU-IBAR (fourth from the right).
SMP-AH project is a 5 year project that aims to stabilize livelihoods of livestock dependent communities by enhancing capacities of all livestock value chain actors to effectively control transboundary animal diseases in a coordinated manner in the following seven countries, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan and Somalia in the IGAD region.
Livestock experts from the Greater Horn of Africa (GHoA) under the framework of the Standard methods and Procedures in Animal health Project (SMP-AH) have agreed, during their annual review and planning meeting, on high impact activities to control transboundary animal diseases (TADs) in cross-border areas in the GHoA. Cross-border areas within the GHoA support a large number of vulnerable livestock-keeping communities that normally experience a number of shocks, most importantly drought. Because of drought conditions, animals reared in such environments move across borders in search of pasture and water. Likewise, animals in such areas move for purposes of trade. This kind of movement for either pasture or trade facilitates spread of transboundary animal diseases. It is therefore important for communities in cross-border areas to collaborate, coordinate and harmonize diseases control.
The Standard Methods and Procedures in Animal Health (SMP-AH) Project activities will involve supporting communities to detect and report disease incidents to facilitate prompt and appropriate disease response such as vaccination campaigns in cross-border areas. The capacity of the veterinary services to undertake surveillance, disease control and information sharing will be enhanced. The overall aim is to enhance livestock productivity, trade, livelihoods and resilience of vulnerable groups found in cross-border areas.
- SMP-AH facilitates signing of an agreement between Kenya and Tanzania for enhanced collaboration and cooperation in cross-border disease control
- SMP-AH facilitates a vaccination campaign against FMD in Uganda
- Passive Disease Reporting in Djibouti Strengthened Through Introduction of a Community-Based Disease Reporting
- AU-IBAR Spearheads a Regional Network to Buttress Quarantine Systems in the IGAD Region