18th February 2014
The African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in collaboration with the Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Secretariat has today launched a new project entitled "Improving Animal Disease Surveillance in Support of Trade in IGAD Member States" in Djibouti.
The launching workshop was opened in the presence of Prof Ahmed Elsawalhy, Director of AU-IBAR representing the African Union Commission, Mr Yufnalis OKUBO representing the IGAD Secretariat, His Excellency Mr Joseph Silva, the Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Djibouti and Dr. Moussa Cheik the CVO of Republic of Djibouti representing the Minister of Agriculture, livestock and Fisheries. It was also attended by representatives of the IGAD region Member States, the African Union Pan-African Vaccine Center (AU-PANVAC), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Animal Health Organization (OIE), and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).
The project is aimed to improve animal disease surveillance and livestock identification and traceability system (LITS) and will be implemented for three years in the eight Member States of the IGAD region, which include Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda. The project is financed by the European Union within the framework of the Regional Indicative Programme of the 10th European Funds for Development (10th EDF) and of the initiative Supporting the Horn of Africa's Resilience (SHARE), and has been endowed with 6 million Euros.
During the occasion, a partnership agreement was signed between AU-IBAR and IGAD Secretariat represented by Prof Ahmed Elsawalhy and Mr Yufnalis Okubo, respectively. The partnership agreement spells out the roles and responsibilities of the two implementing partners of the project.
Indeed, the livestock sector has substantial potential to contribute to food security and general economic integration within the Greater Horn of Africa. However the sector is seriously constrained by animal diseases. The livestock trade bans experienced by the IGAD region by the major importing countries on livestock imports due to concerns over trans-boundary animal diseases have had significant impacts on the livelihoods of livestock dependent communities and national economies.