This morning, the Executive Secretary of IGAD His Excellency Ambassador (Eng) Mahboub Maalim and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director of Kenya and East Africa Ms. Karen Freeman signed an agreement of 17 million U.S. dollars to support IGAD and USAID’s shared development priorities in the region at Kempinski Hotel, Djibouti.
The funding provided by USAID will support activities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment; Economic Cooperation, Integration and Social Development; Peace and Security and Corporate Development Services within the IGAD region to promote sustainable economic growth and resilience and improve management of risks in border areas in the IGAD region.
The agreement will strengthen the collaboration and partnership between the two organizations, outline a common understanding of how the U.S government supports IGAD priorities, and implement programs that will contribute to common goals of USAID and IGAD over the next 5 years.
USAID has partnered with IGAD since 2006 to strengthen security, climate change detection and analysis, resilience and economic development in the region.
In his opening remarks, H.E Maalim expressed IGAD’s appreciation towards USAID’s great contribution to IGAD programs that aim to increase political and economic stability, resilience and knowledge management in the region and African continent.
Ms. Karen Freeman acknowledged the efforts that IGAD has made in some of the region’s most remote areas to to increase access to trade, adding that this has not only promoted prosperity in those areas, but also delivered better livelihoods to their communities. This puts IGAD in the forefront as a model for integration as a partner and driver toward the achievement of USAID’s strategy in Africa.
She called for institutional development and requested that IGAD continue help East Africa grow through its strategic partnerships, intellectual leadership and member state engagement.
USAID’s five-year strategic plan will focus on increased trade, investment and food security; health services and systems for marginalized and vulnerable populations; increased security of populations vulnerable to regional threats; and strengthening East African institutions’ leadership and learning.
His Excellency Thomas P. Kelly, Ambassador of the United States of America in Djibouti, also commended IGAD on its achievements so far and added that he had no doubt that IGAD is having an impact in all its programs.
The signing was witnessed by Ms. Candace Buzzard, the Deputy USAID Mission Director of Kenya and East Africa and Mr. Donald Keene, the Regional Legal Advisor of USAID and well as IGAD Senior management.
Source: Peace,Prosperity And Regional Integration