Friday, Jan 20th Last update: Fri, 20 Jan 2017 4pm

IGAD Centre for Pastoral Areas and Livestock Development (ICPALD) has organized the above regional experience sharing mission to Namibia for IGAD Ministers and Parliamentarians from Dec 12-15, 2016. Livestock identification and traceability is an emerging system being used by both the exporting and importing countries to protect public health, enhance food safety and trade in live animals and livestock products. To be effective a LITS system requires two basic components, an identification system (for example brands, marks or a device) and a system that tracks an animal, or group of animals, along the value chain to the final destination. It is only when these components are all put together that a LITS system becomes functional and it is, therefore, imperative that the IGAD region strengthens efforts of disease prevention and control and finds ways of enhancing and sustaining livestock-based trade and its benefits.

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VETERINARY GOVERNACE programme that is being implemented by ICPALD in partnership with AU-IBAR and funded by the European Union (EU) has been supporting North Eastern Africa Livestock Council (NEALCO) to promote regional and international trade. NEALCO is a private sector regional livestock stakeholders' association constituted by national livestock traders’ associations drawn from 13 countries, namely: Burundi, Djibouti, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Eritrea, Ethiopia, Egypt, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda and Tanzania with the main objective of promoting, coordinating, sharing information and advocating for enhanced trade in livestock and livestock products within North Eastern Africa and Middle East Countries and beyond. The association has recruited livestock associations into national chapters from six (6) member states, namely; Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. The association further has developed a five year strategy, constitution.

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The IGAD Region has been prone to disasters with results of human suffering including loss of life, loss of livestock and other means of livelihood, slowed development and caused other economic costs. Until the early 1980’s, drought and other hazards were managed by crisis. The 1984 drought crisis in Ethiopia, Northern Kenya and North Eastern Uganda, is a case in point. This was rated as one of the worst ever recorded droughts in history, because of its duration, geographical spread and severity. The situation has changed rapidly over the last 30 years, with considerable development in early warning systems, contingency planning and financing, emergency preparedness and response as well as recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction to support pastoral communities that are highly venerable to climatic shocks (drought and floods). 

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