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Djibouti, 30th June 2012: Delegates from member states and national consultants from the IGAD region convened yesterday in Djibouti for a two-day regional workshop to discuss the outcomes of national assessment missions and finalize the design coordination mechanisms for the implementation of the drought disaster resilience in the Horn of Africa.

Drawn from government ministries of agriculture, natural resource management, livestock development, water, environment, drought management, foreign affairs and international relations in Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda, the delegates will review the recommendations of the assessment missions as well as discuss the national coordination mechanisms, the regional platform and the linkages between them.

Furthermore, the delegates, who will be joined by the consultants and staff of the IGAD Secretariat, will define the role of the national platforms and their terms of reference in relation to the regional platform. They will also identify appropriate communication procedures as well as ways of strengthening the existing national coordination mechanisms.

Opening the workshop, the Director of Agriculture and Environment, Mr. Mohamed Moussa urged the delegates to finalize the operational structure of the platform to be presented to the IGAD Council of Ministers next week. On behalf of the IGAD Executive Secretary, he apologized for asserting pressure to conclude the preparatory process and move into tangible activities that would ensure drought disaster resilience and sustainability in the region.

The Director welcomed the delegates to Djibouti, the seat of IGAD and reaffirmed the commitment of the regional organization to fulfil the promises of the political leadership in the region to end drought emergencies.

The workshop ends this afternoon with recommendations and conclusions for consideration by the Interim Steering Committee of the Regional Platform that convenes on 2nd July 2012. The Committee will then present the final document to the IGAD Council of Ministers end of next week for adoption.

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