Gambia’s GAFSP technical team honoured
Monday, June 11, 2012
resident coordinator of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United
Nations (FAO) Wednesday organised a brief reception to commend the efforts of
The Gambia’s technical team that worked relentlessly in formulating a proposal
to the successful approval of the Global Agriculture and Food Security
reception, which was held at the FAO Fajara head office, was attended by the
minister of Agriculture, Solomon Owens and other dignitaries from the Ministry,
as well as the six-member technical team led by Momodou Kotu Cham. It would be
recalled that Gambia’s financing proposal to the tune of US$28 million was
recently approved and its aim is to contribute to reducing the financial gap
elaborated in the GNAIP to 39% by building on the ongoing and scaling up proven
The Gambia, according to reports was among the first set of countries to start the process of accessing the grant when the GAFSP funding source was established in 2010. GAFSP is a multilateral mechanism to assist in the implementation of pledges made by the G20 in Pittsburg in September 2009. The objective is to address the underfunding of country and regional agriculture and food security investment plans already being developed by countries in consultation with donors and other stakeholders at the country level.
Addressing the gathering, Babagana Ahmadou, the FAO resident representative in The Gambia said the move is meant to congratulate the team that worked very hard for the preparation of The Gambia’s proposal for assessing the Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme, which was very successful as The Gambia’s proposal was approved to the tune of US$ 28 million. He described the move as a remarkable achievement, which the team under the technical leadership of Momodou Kotu Cham spent a lot of time to draft.
He continued: “So it’s appropriate for us to bring this team and to say thank you and congratulations for a job well done as well as to prepare for the task ahead, because this is just the beginning as there is a long way to go. There is a lot of work to be done like the preparation of the project. The project formulation will run into months and we still need the technical team in making sure that we prepare proposals that are acceptable to the Steering Committee of GAFSP.”
part, Solomon Owens, the minister of Agriculture explained that with the
Framework of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development programme (CAADP)
the government of The Gambia took the first step in March 2010 by requesting
technical assistance from the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United
Nations (FAO) in formulating a concept that would form the basis of a
medium-term investment programme with the view to access financing though the
multi- donor GAFSP.
“With several FAO technical missions fielded in the last two years and working
in close collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, a technical team was
constituted in March 2010 and tasked with the responsibility of formulating the
Gambian GAFSP proposal.
The GAFSP formulation team consulted broadly with a number of stakeholders holding working sessions with the CAADP Technical Committee, senior staff of sectoral ministries including the then National Farmers Platform Commission, representatives of private sector, NGOs as well as priorities with indicative activities that would comply with the GAFSP eligibility criteria and contribute to implementing the Gambia National Agriculture Investment Programme (GNAIP) within the context of the CAADP Compact that Gambia jointly signed with development partners on 28th October 2009.”
Minister Owens thanked the technical team for a job well done recalling that in terms of grant to the agricultural sector, this is the biggest grant ever. “I think the credit all goes to the team that put it together,” he added.
Momodou Kotu Cham, who led the technical team, thanked the team at FAO for their tremendous support stressing that even going down to the level of the consultative process, they received high level participation from other colleagues at Action Aid International- The Gambia and National Coordination Organisation for Farmers’ –The Gambia (NACOFAG).
This move, he said, was all done to meet the criteria of the GAFSP. “So that was why we had to send out a very disciplined team to get the views and aspirations of recipients into the document. And of course, we are very happy with the result that came out of that,” he added. While hailing the government’s contribution in the overall move, Cham also thanked the technical team members for their commitment and dedication. Abdoulie Baks Touray, a member of the team also spoke at the event.
Author: Sheriff Janko