Djibouti, 6th July 2012: Senior technical experts from various government ministries of IGAD member states finished their three-day meeting in Djibouti today by making several recommendations to the IGAD Council of Ministers for adoption.
Among the recommendations to the council that is scheduled to meeting in Addis Ababa next week include the establishment of IGAD Centre for Drylands and Livestock Development as well as a Regional Centre of Excellence for Cancer.
The experts also called for the establishment of an inter-ministerial council for the implementation of the Minimum Integration Plan (MIP) that provides a road map towards the creation of an IGAD Free Trade Area. The IGAD Secretariat was urged to take the lead in infrastructure development in the region as a crucial part of MIP.
It was also recommended that the Council of Ministers adopts the establishment of an IGAD Women and Peace Forum that would explore practical measures to advance understanding between diverse peoples, their cultures and religions, in order to foster mutual respect, tolerance and friendship.
Furthermore, the experts recommended for the adoption of the IGAD Gender Policy as well as the Peace and Security Strategy. The Council of Ministers was also called upon to adopt the establishment of a Mediation Support Unit (MSU) of IGAD and to take note of the transformation of IGAD Capacity Building Program against Terrorism (ICPAT) to IGAD Security Sector Program (ISSP).
Finally, the Committee of Experts recommended to the Council to approve the 6.6 million US Dollar budget for 2012.
The Chairperson of the Committee thanked the Member States for conducting the business of the meeting in a cordially and openly. He also thanked the Secretariat for working very hard to provide the documentation and facilitate the meeting. ENDS.