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Nov. 19, 2019 (NAIROBI, Kenya): A joint IGAD-UNESCO consultative workshop was held on the 19th of November 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya, to discuss the draft report on the assessment of national qualification frameworks in IGAD member states with the objective of developing a comprehensive Regional Education Qualification Framework (RQF). This consultative process was adopted by the Addis Ababa Call for Action of the IGAD ministers in charge of education for the implementation of the Djibouti Declaration on education for refugees, returnees and host communities.

The workshop was attended by two experts from each member state, namely, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda. Partner agencies in attendance included GIZ, UNHCR, UNICEF, Windle International, ICUEA (Inter University Council of East African Community).

In her opening remarks, Ms. Fathia Alwan, Director of IGAD Social Development, expressed appreciation to UNESCO and GIZ for their strong commitment in the implementation of the Djibouti Declaration of which RQF is one of the key priority areas.

Speaking on behalf of the Strengthening IGAD Migration Policy Implementation Project (SIMPI), implemented by GIZ on behalf of the German Government, Kokebe Hailegabriel also underlined the importance of the regional qualification framework and its relevance for the free movement of persons protocol and regional integration. She iterated the continued support of GIZ to the realization of the Djibouti Declaration and its different components, including the ongoing costed national education response plans in the IGAD member states.

On her part, the Director for UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa, Ms. Ann Therese Ndong Jatta outlined UNESCCO’s commitment to working with IGAD and promoting quality education through the IGAD RQF. She emphasized that RQF is important part of the regional and international development initiatives such as SDG4, the AU Continental Education Strategy for Africa and others. She therefore urged all member states, IGAD and partners to move this important agenda forward through sustained partnership.

The workshop reviews the study report by the UNESCO consultant and is expected to come-up with recommendations on the way forward to consolidating the RQF in the coming months.

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