AFRICAN UNION, FAO LAUNCH PROJECT TO END HUNGER IN HORN OF AFRICA

The African Union (AU) Commission and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has launched a technical co-operation project (TCP) to end hunger in the Horn of Africa sub-region.

The one-year project is aimed at catalyzing concrete action on the ground to end hunger and domesticate the Malabo Declaration in six Horn of African countries — Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Uganda.

Recurring and severe droughts have over the years caused widespread famine, ecological degradation and economic hardship in the Horn of Africa, it was noted.

Although individual countries made substantial efforts to cope with the situation, there are still signs that the problem is still far from over, which demonstrate the need for a regional approach to supplement national efforts.

It is in this regard that the AU Commission and the FAO launched the project , the first of its kind in the series of expected projects for ending hunger in Africa.

“Ending Hunger in the Horn of Africa is the first project in a range of activities for translating the Malabo Commitments into concrete actions,” said Ernest Ruzindaza, Senior Advisor to the AU Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, here Tuesday.

As the Horn of Africa is facing food insecurity aggravated by the recent El Nino weather phenomenon effects, it is the right place to start with, Ruzindaza said.

The FAO Sub-Regional Director for Eastern Africa, Dr. Patrick Kormawa, said the partnership with the AU was to put in place specific programmes which would lead to the eradication of hunger in the Horn of Africa.

The specific activities include documenting success stories, what African countries have done to end hunger and how they were applied it, putting in place monetary mechanisms and co-ordination mechanisms, among others.

“What we need to realize in the project is the commitment of governments, put programmes in a holistic manner and consistency in the implementation of this program,” he added.

The Malabo Declaration, which was adopted by heads of AU member states in 2014, addresses similar goals to the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) adopted by AU heads of state and government, but with more specific targets and goals.

The member states committed themselves to end hunger by 2025, halve poverty by 2025 through inclusive agricultural growth and transformation, boosting intra-African trade in agricultural commodities and services, enhancing resilience in livelihoods and production systems to climate variability and other shocks, among others.

Source: Nam New Network