22 March 2013, Addis Ababa - A high-level meeting aimed at drafting and formalizing a joint veterinary protocol agreement for the control of Trans-boundary Animal Diseases (TADs) in South Sudan and Sudan was held in March in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Opening the two day meeting, the FAO Sub regional Coordinator for Eastern Africa and representative to Ethiopia, AU and the ECA, Mr. Modibo Traore said the control of Trans-boundary Animal Diseases can only be attained through simultaneous efforts by countries sharing common borders with the aim of allowing cross-border and free movement of livestock in Eastern Africa and across IGAD Member States, either in search of pasture, water or trade opportunities.
Mr. Traore advised that efforts at country and regional levels should focus on defining geographic areas to be covered, harmonizing vaccination calendars, locating quarantine facilities, setting up mobile veterinary border patrol units and diagnostic laboratories, carrying out joint border epidemio-surveillance activities, coordination mechanisms, capacity building and communication and awareness campaigns.
“FAO is also working to foster inter-regional collaboration among countries in TADs control and livestock trade through experience sharing and joint programming,” Traore added. This will enhance the production, marketing and ultimately improve people’s food security and well-being.
The meeting was organized by the FAO Sub Regional Office for Eastern Africa (SFE), jointly with the FAO Office for South Sudan and was attended by technical officers of the FAO Sudan and South Sudan country offices, senior livestock experts from FAO Eastern Africa regional office (SFE), FAO Office for the Near East (RNE), Ministries of Animals resources and livestock and technical officers of FAO’s Animal Health Service (AGAH), the Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) and the Intergovernmental Authority for Development (IGAD).
The control of TADs through regional efforts emanates from the very fact that livestock move freely across IGAD Member States either in search of pasture, water or trade opportunities.
According to the regulations of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), the control of Trans-boundary Animal Diseases can only be attained through simultaneous efforts by countries sharing common borders.
The new Resilience Program of IGAD strongly advocates for the control of TADs through a regional approach due to the fact that past singular efforts by member states have not achieved much due to the free movement of livestock across borders.
Therefore, controlling TADs through simultaneous efforts have necessitated the formulation and agreement upon a common protocol by participating states to promote both intra-regional and the export trade.
Ethiopia, Sudan and South Sudan
A joint veterinary protocol was formulated and agreed upon between Ethiopia and Sudan through FAO facilitation for the control of TADs. Both countries have prepared documents on a joint plan of actions to enhance the control of major trans-boundary livestock diseases along their borders consisting of FMD, CBPP, LSD, PPR & SGP and RVF.
As South Sudan shares a porous border area with both Sudan and Ethiopia, agreements between the three countries will bring maximum results, according to Emmanuelle GuerneBleich, Livestock officer at FAO SFE.
Therefore, the high movement of livestock in search of pasture and water from Sudan into South Sudan and the trading of livestock in the reverse direction have brought the need to formalize a joint veterinary protocol agreement for the control of TADs between Sudan and South Sudan. This will be followed by a formulized agreement between Ethiopia and South Sudan, according to FAO.
The two day workshop, among others, has clearly identified border areas to be incorporated for the control of TADs, major diseases to be controlled, coordination mechanisms, operational modalities framework, and formulation of a common log-frame.