Third meeting of the Regional Steering Committee (RSTC) of the Africa Action Plan (2011-2017)
The 3rd RSTC Meeting of the Action Plan for Improving Statistics for Food Security, Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development in Africa was held from 30 April to 1 May 2014 in Nairobi, Kenya. The objectives of the meeting were to (i) review the progress made in the implementation of the Action Plan, (ii) discuss and endorse the Country Assessment results, (iii) discuss and approve the 2014 regional work plan and budget, and (iv) discuss and agree on improved coordination arrangements for the implementation of the Action Plan.
- The meeting was attended by representatives of AfDB, the Global Office/FAO, UNECA, the Chair of AFCAS (Morocco), the Chair of StatCom-Africa (Ghana), a Statistical Training Centre representative (ENSEA-Abidjan), BMGF, Uganda, and Ethiopia.
The RSTC approved the work plan and budget for 2014, and endorsed the release of a report on assessments of African countries’ capacity to produce agricultural statistics. In addition, the Committee (i) supported the Global Office’s proposal
to simplify the Global Strategy’s Governance mechanism; (ii) approved the newly proposed Governance mechanism for the Action Plan for Africa; (iii) recommended to enhance and sustain resource mobilization efforts by diversifying approaches and opportunities; (iv) provided guidance on the effective coordination of the implementation of the Action Plan and; (v) renewed its membership and composition, with a proposal for new Co-Chairs of the RSTC, represented by Uganda and Cabo Verde.
The next RSTC meeting is scheduled to take place in November 2014 in Tunis or Kampala.
Vincent Ngendakumana, AfDB
The In-Depth Country Assessment (IdCA) Regional Validation Workshop in Accra
The FAO RAF Office organised a Regional IdCA Validation Workshop from 6-8 May 2014 in Accra as part of the activities for the implementation of the assessment of national agricultural statistics systems (“Strengthening Agricultural Statistics in Anchor Countries – Phase I: Assessment of Anchor Country Agricultural Statistics Systems”). The project is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF).
The workshop was attended by 41 participants, including National Strategy Coordinators (NSC) from the participating countries (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana Mali, Nigeria, Tanzania and Uganda); countries that have started or completed a strategic plan for agricultural and rural statistics (SPARS):Burundi, Morocco and Tunisia and the ones that are ready to start (Benin, Cabo Verde and Côte d’Ivoire); FAO; the African Union; the African Development Bank (AfDB); the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA).
The objective of the workshop was to provide an update on the implementation of the Global Strategy and the Africa Action Plan; discuss and endorse the main findings and recommendations of the IdCA process; share experiences on the assessments among countries; discuss and plan national advocacy strategies for the participating countries and agree on the way forward.
The following recommendations were made during the workshop: long and short term training should be carried out to improve agricultural statistics’ capacity development; the human resource assessment component needs to be strengthened to provide reliable elements for targeting real needs of countries; countries should follow-up rapidly on the implementation of SPARS; and in addition, the M&E system needs to be strengthened.
The participants acknowledged the work carried out during the assessment exercises by the selected countries and took note of the difficulties. Finally, it was decided that a workshop for advocacy would be conducted by each country with the assistance of National Consultants by the end of June 2014.
Eloi Ouedraogo, FAO