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11-10-2017, Addis Ababa (Ethiopia): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) today convened the 4th Steering Committee Meeting of its Land Governance Project in Addis Ababa just after a successful two-day meeting that saw the establishment of an IGAD Regional Dialogue Platform on Land Governance.

This Steering Committee Meeting was chaired by IGAD Director of Agriculture and Environment, Mr. Mohamed Moussa, with the Coordinator of Land Policy Initiative;
Regional Integration and Trade Division at UNECA, Dr Joan Kagwanja, and the First Secretary of the Development Cooperation Swiss Agency (SDC) based in Addis Ababa, Mr. Peter Sidler, at the high table, and with H.E. Aboud Gabir Saeed Fadlalah, Minister of Environment, Natural Resources and Physical Development of Sudan, in attendance.

Mr. Mohamed Moussa, in his opening remarks, announced that over the year the land governance was being integrated more into IGAD programs. “Within the resources that were available to IGAD, I am happy to report that most of the activities that we committed to achieve as per the work plan were achieved”, he said before ensuring that phase II of the IGAD Land Governance Project was “geared towards support to Member States in implementing the AU Declaration”.

Dr. Joan Joan Kagwanja, on her side, recognized that even if the IGAD Land Governance Project started late in time, it was catching up fast in terms of implementation. She noted that IGAD was paradoxically very advanced compared to other Regional Economic Communities on the African continent. “It is extremely useful to be directly interacting with Member States practitioners and decision-makers in land governance so as to fast-track implementation which is at a very commendable stage”, she concluded.

Mr. Peter Sidler expressed his satisfaction with the formation of the land governance platform which is seen as a tangible result that makes IGAD a pioneer in the implementation of the African Union Land Policy Initiative. He shared his positive feelings about the potential financial support by the Switzerland for the second phase of the Project.

The members of the Steering Committee were then briefed on the achievements of the Project and challenges encountered. Projections for 2018 were discussed before the meeting closed.

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