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The ministers signing the cross border MOU (from left to right: South Sudan, Ethiopia, kenya and Uganda)

3-5th July, 2019 (Entebbe, Uganda): IGAD Center for Pastoral Areas and Livestock Development (ICPALD) with financial support from USAID and FAO/South Sudan EU cross border project organized a multilateral two days meeting between Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan and Uganda technical teams in Entebbe, Uganda on 3-4th July, 2019 to develop an implementation framework to operationalize the Memorandum of Understanding on crossborder cooperation and coordination on animal health and sanitary measures in IGAD cluster 1 (Karamoja). This was followed by a one-day meeting of Ministers responsible for animal resources of the four countries on 5th July, 2019 who signed the MoU. This will strengthen the four countries’ cooperation and collaboration along their common borders to address animal health issues including disease surveillance, disease prevention & control, sharing of natural resources, diagnostic infrastructures and timely sharing of animal health and trade information. The technical and Ministerial meetings held back to back were attended by 30 and 26 participants respectively from the four countries. Participants included Ministers, protocol officers, Veterinary technical staff from national and regional/ state governments, FAO, Mercy Corps, ICPALD/IGAD and community leader

Hon. Joy Kabatsi, state Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, Uganda, officially opened the meeting. She reminded participants that Karamoja cluster is characterized by frequent drought and inadequate water that contribute to livestock movement across the common borders whose communities are the same people. This contributes to spread of transboundary animal diseases (TADs), zoonoses and pests that require cooperation and coordinated efforts from the four countries for effective prevention and control; that is the objective of this MoU. The cooperation will promote inter-regional and external trade in livestock and livestock products from our countries.  Antonio Luis, FAO representative, Uganda; Dr. Solomon Munyua, ICPALD Director; Hon. Dr. Gebre Yohannes G/Egziabher, State Minister of Agriculture, Ethiopia; Hon. Mwangi Kiunjuri, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Irrigation, Kenya and Hon. James Janka Duku, Minister of Livestock and Fisheries, South Sudan, made welcome remarks.

The two meetings achieved the following:

  • The technical meeting developed an implementation framework and established a governance structure with clear terms of reference,
  • The four Ministers signed the cross border MoU for cluster 1 (Karamoja cluster).

 Recommendations of the technical meeting:

  • Governments of Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan and Uganda should assign individual members for the joint steering committee (JSC) and Joint coordination and management unit (JCMU)  and notify their names and contact details to ICPALD as soon as possible;
  • ICPALD in collaboration with member states and development partners should organize the official launch of the JSC and JCMU;
  • The four governments should start popularizing the signed MoU and implementation framework (IF) to development partners, policy makers, cross border communities and other relevant stakeholders along the livestock value chain for buy-in and support implementation.
  • The four countries should develop a harmonized vaccination calendar along cross-border areas with resources from existing national projects or development partner’s funded programmes;
  • JSC and JCMU should lobby and advocate for national resources (from existing budget and manpower) to facilitate implementation of the signed MoU and associated IF;
  • The four governments as well as ICPALD, FAO and other implementing partners should jointly and/or independently develop bankable proposals and approach relevant development partners for resource mobilization to support implementation of priority activities,

The ministerial meeting committed to:

  1. Advocate and maintain political will at the highest level of our four countries in support of the Memorandum of Understanding and the associated draft Implementation Framework.
  2. Mobilize, in collaboration with IGAD and FAO, the required resources from within our respective countries and partners to roll out activities contained in the draft implementation framework.

 ICPALD/IGAD expresses appreciation to USAID and FAO /EU South Sudan cross border project for funding this activity.

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