Monday, Dec 18, 2017

26-07-2017, Addis Ababa (Ethiopia): The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in partnership with the World Bank this morning opened a two-day workshop aimed at considering The role of Groundwater in Drought Resilience in the IGAD Region under the chairmanship of the Director of Boundary and Transboundary Rivers Affairs Directorate of Ethiopia, Mr. Teshome Atnafi, the Programme Manager of Natural Resources and Renewable Energy, Mr Daher Elmi, and Senior Water Resources Management Specialist-World Bank Washington, Mr. Marcus Wijnen.

The objective of the workshop is to inform Member States’ ministries in charge of water resources management of the World Bank Regional Groundwater Initiative (RGI) developed under the Regional Initiative in Support of the Horn of Africa (2014), and in view of adjusting the RGI initial steps in coordination with the most relevant experts in the IGAD region. Also, the participants are to debate on the potential solutions and ways forward to improve the status of both the groundwater knowledge base and the capacity to manage the resources in a way that optimizes the benefits of the resource in building resilience.

Mr. Fred Mwango, Regional Water Expert-IGAD, noted that Groundwater resources management has not attracted lots of resources in proportion to the importance of its utilization in a region largely arid and semi arid in size. That is why he thanked the World Bank for showing interest in supporting IGAD, “a region that is repeatedly visited by drought”. “We are glad of the high turn-out of officials from IGAD Member States which shows a strong commitment in a collaborative work, and the very significant presence of water Experts from inside and outside the region”, he said.

“The World Bank suggests an approach that combines different funding sources to advance components of a regional groundwater agenda in the IGAD region that would strengthen ongoing efforts in the region in the field of drought resilience and water resources management by regional and global partners”, were the words by Mr. Marcus Wijnen for the World Bank.

Mr. Teshome, as Chief Guest of Honour and Chair for the opening session, welcomed the audience and declared the workshop officially open. He highlighted the importance of cooperation in regional matters.

The objective of the World Bank Regional Groundwater Initiative (RGI) is to assess the potential of the regional groundwater resources, considering their variability in space and time, to strengthen drought resilience and contribute to poverty reduction.

The IGAD region covers 12 rivers basins, either entirely or in part. The proposed RGI project will focus on the whole IGAD Region.
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14-07-2017, Addis Ababa (Ethiopia): Ministers in charge of biodiversity, environment and natural resources drawn from Member States of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) this morning adopted the IGAD Regional Biodiversity Protocol in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, during a session that was chaired by the Minister of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change of Ethiopia, H.E. Dr. Gemedo Dalle.


The Minister of Environment of Djibouti-H.E Mr. Moussa Mohamed Ahmed, the Minister of Environment and Water of Uganda-H.E Cheptoris Sam Mangusho, the Deputy Minister of Environment, Forestry, and Range of Somalia-H.E Mr. Abdikarim Khalif Abdidhalac, the Under Secretary of Environment and Forestry of South Sudan-H.E Mr. Joseph Africano Bartel, Mrs Elkhitma Elawad Mohammed of the Higher Council for Environment and Natural Resources of Sudan, and Dr. Kennedy Ondimu of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources were in attendance while IGAD Executive Secretary, H.E Amb (Eng) Mahboub Maalim, and Mr. Jose Puig Vara of the European Delegation to Djibouti and IGAD were officiating from the high table.


The IGAD Regional Biodiversity Protocol was adopted alongside related strategies for the control and management of invasive species, conservation of transboundary wildlife and sharing of biodiversity benefits, as well as domestication of regional, continental and global instruments.


During his opening remarks, H.E Dr. Gemedo, noted the very high level commitment by Member States to the “conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity” that is “fundamental to sustainable development”. While noting that the endorsement of the regional protocol was “not enough to protect diversity resources in the region”, he highlighted that it was “rather the level of commitment to properly implement the Protocol that would contribute to the sustainable management of the biodiversity resources”.


Amb (Eng) Maalim made the link between drought/desertification and environment degradation: “the more the environment is degraded, the more the frequency of drought and the acceleration of desertification increases”; thus, the need to “focus on enhancing ecosystem resilience” and to have instruments, such as the Protocol, towards these goals.
Mr Puig Vara also had opening remarks to highlight the commitment by the European Union to the IGAD ecosystem resilience agenda.


Leading to the adoption of the Protocol and related strategies, the Biodiversity Management Programme that IGAD implements with the support of the European Union, organized a series of meetings to validate the documents.
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Attachments:
Download this file (FINAL MINISTERIAL RESOLUTIONS.pdf)FINAL MINISTERIAL RESOLUTIONS[FINAL MINISTERIAL RESOLUTIONS]150 kB2017-07-15 04:34

Nairobi, 28 June 2017: Experts drawn from different government agencies of the IGAD Member States convened yesterday in Nairobi to review the draft Regional Biodiversity Protocol and related strategies.

Addressing the participants of the four-day meeting, the IGAD Executive Secretary, Amb Mahboub Maalim pointed out that regional economic integration in the Horn of Africa would be realized through prudent management of natural resources and transboundary ecosystems. He went on to give example of cross-border projects and programmes, such as the animal health and pastoral conflict management in the Karamoja and Somali clusters between Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and South Sudan.

Amb Mahboub congratulated the members of the Technical Advisory and Programme Steering Committees of the IGAD Biodiversity Management Programme (BMP) for developing impressive regional policies and strategies to address collective environmental challenges in the region. He urged them to strengthen data collection and information sharing to curb these challenges and ensure implementation of the policies and strategies. Furthermore, he appealed for the establishment of a regional financing mechanism to actualize the programmes. 

The Principal Secretary in Kenya’s Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, Mr Charles Sunkuli officially opened the meeting. Reading the statement on his behalf, Dr Kennedy Ondimu stated that the review of the protocol and related strategies was a sign of high commitment to sustainable management of biodiversity resources in the region. While urging IGAD Member States to fully implement the regional biodiversity policy, the PS pointed out that the protocol would go a long way to ensure implementation with the supporting resource management strategies.

Among the draft strategies to be reviewed include the one to control and manage invasive species, conservation of transboundary wildlife and sharing of biodiversity benefits. The participants are also expected to review a draft strategy on domestication of regional, continental and global instruments.

In conclusion, the guest of honour reiterated the importance of rich biodiversity resource and ecosystems in the region for economic integration and development. He added that ecosystem goods and services regulate the climate and rainfall regimes, as well as the health and well being of the environment and humans.

The IGAD BMP organized the meeting that ends on Friday with the support of the European Union.

For further information, please contact:
Dr Debalkew Berhe| Programme Manager, Environment Protection | IGAD Secretariat |
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

09-05-2017, Djibouti – The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) in partnership with the African Union - Inter African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) and with the support of the European Union (EU) is convening a meeting in Djibouti with regional representatives from the IGAD Member States from May 9-11, 2017.

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