The Standard Methods and Procedures in Animal Health (SMP-AH) project in partnership with ICPALD organized a technical back-stopping workshop for ARIS Administrators in the IGAD region in Naivasha, Kenya from 9th to 10th June 2015. The workshop discussed means of strengthening capacities in individual countries for data handling and sharing livestock information. Among others, countries shared updates on the status of ARIS II functioning and operations. A total of 13 participants drawn from Djibouti, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda AU-IBAR and IGAD attended the workshop.
In his welcome remarks, Dr Solomon Munyua, Acting Director of the IGAD Centre for Pastoral Areas and Livestock Development (ICPALD) welcomed Member States (MS) to the workshop. He recognized the importance of data management performed by the ARIS II Country Administrators especially in informing planning for animal exports and animal breeding. He noted that MS needed to embrace management of animal resources data with seriousness to help them determine investments for national governments. Dr Munyua expressed his concern about the low status of reporting in MS that is affecting the planning process for governments that normally depends on accurate information. He appealed to MS to collect data and submit it in a timely manner.
In his opening remarks, on behalf of the Director of African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources – Prof. Ahmed Elsawalhy, Dr Joseph Magona recognized the continued partnerships between AU-IBAR and IGAD/ICPALD and MS regarding development of animal resources in the region. He reiterated the fact that agriculture in general and livestock in particular are amongst the most important drivers of the economies of the IGAD Member States, and employ a large proportion of their population. He emphasized that development of these sectors requires qualitative, complete and timely data and information to support monitoring, planning and decision making. He stated that the ARIS technical back-stopping workshop was intended to provide MS with technical corrective service regarding animal health data collection, collation and analysis in preparation for sharing. He encouraged MS to embrace utilization of ARIS at various levels to promote effective management of livestock data.