The Advisory Committee of the VET-GOV project in the IGAD held its first meeting on 22nd November, 2013 at the Royal Suites Hotel in Kampala, Uganda.In Attendance was, Dr Solomon Munyua, Ag Director ICPALD representing ES IGAD; Dr Mohammed Abdelrazig, Vet- Gov Technical Assistant AU- IBAR; Hon Ali Wario, Member of Parliament ,Kenya National Assembly; Dr Kwaku Agyemang, Consultant- FAO SFE; Dr Sam Okuthe, Epidemiology FAO-Kenya; Mr Omeno Suji REGLAP; Dr Sowda Roble; Director of Livestock, Somalia; Dr Ameha Sebsibe ICPALD, Dr Samuel Wakhusama ICPALD/AU-IBAR; Dr Jacob Korok, Acting Director General of Veterinary Services-South Sudan and Dr Khidir Mohamed Elfaki, Director of Animal Health, Sudan.
The meeting was officially opened by the Acting Director of ICPALD, Dr Solomon Munyua, on behalf of the IGAD ES and AU IBAR representative Dr Mohamed Abdelraziq.
The objectives of the meeting were to:-
1. Launch the Advisory Committee
2. Brief the Advisory Committee on the progress made in the implementation of the VET-GOV programme activities in the region
3. Discuss the Terms of Reference (ToR) for the Advisory Committee;
4. Discuss issues related to delivery of animal health services in the ASALs, animal identification and pastoralist mobility in the IGAD.
The Committee appreciated the progress made by the VET-GOV in the IGAD region and indicated that there was need to:
• Identify ways in which to fast-track project activities in Somalia to enable the country to be at par with the rest of the IGAD Member States;
• The Advisory Committee noted with concern that not all Member States had requested veterinary legislative review by the OIE. The Committee therefore requested AU-IBAR to engage the OIE to support individual countries in veterinary legislative review and drafting of action plans;
• The Committee acknowledged the difficulties of harmonizing national and decentralized livestock policies within the IGAD Member States. Livestock Policy Hubs in the Members States should therefore consider on how to harmonize national policy issues with the decentralized political governance in the IGAD Member States and engage the key stakeholders;
The committee was successfully launched after agreeing on their Terms of Reference. The next meeting will be held in 6 months.