IGAD and UNDP to collaborate on cross-border development in the Horn of Africa

August 18, 2022
IGAD and UNDP to collaborate on cross-border development in the Horn of Africa

Zeynu Ummer (left), Team Lead and Senior Technical Adviser, UNDP Africa Borderlands Centre and Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu (right), Executive Secretary of IGAD

UNDP Africa Borderlands Centre

Djibouti, 18 August 2022 -- The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) today to deepen collaboration on various areas of mutual interest including cross-border development in the Horn of Africa.

The MoU will build on ongoing collaboration between the two institutions, beginning with the implementation of a joint programme on borderlands development covering the IGAD member states in the region.

“IGAD appreciates the strategic partnership with UNDP in promoting the socioeconomic transformation of borderlands in the IGAD region,” stated Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, Executive Secretary of IGAD. “The shared cultures, languages and traditions of border communities in the IGAD region can serve as building blocks for strengthening cohesion and promoting development in the borderlands.”

The MoU was agreed at the conclusion of a two-day workshop, taking place on 17-18 August 2022 in Djibouti. The workshop also validated a three-year joint IGAD/UNDP programme document on borderlands development.

In his remarks, Zeynu Ummer, Team Lead and Senior Technical Adviser at the UNDP Africa Borderlands Centre, said “UNDP and IGAD have a long-standing presence and engagement in the Horn of Africa. The new programme on borderlands development takes into account lessons learned from ongoing joint initiatives and concretizes the UNDP-IGAD partnership to ensure the Agenda 2030 Sustainable Development Goals are attained in the region.”

Included in the agreed areas of cooperation is the exploration of joint programmatic initiatives at regional and country levels through the regular exchange of information, analysis and reporting. The two organizations will leverage their respective comparative advantage and value add in resilience building, socioeconomic development, prevention of violent extremism, conflict prevention, youth and gender, climate change, blue economy, water and other strategic areas.

Alessandra Casazza, Manager of the UNDP Resilience Hub for Africa, shared “The MoU formalizes and strengthens ongoing and future joint initiatives led by UNDP and IGAD. The Drought Resilience Building in the Horn of Africa Programme, for instance, is a concrete example of what this partnership can deliver for communities in the border regions.”

The workshop also engaged technical experts working on cross-border programming at IGAD and several UNDP offices, including the Africa Borderlands Centre, the Regional Programme for Africa, the Resilience Hub for Africa, and UNDP Country Offices in Djibouti, Kenya, Ethiopia, South Sudan, and Uganda.

The interdisciplinary workshop will also feature a dialogue on partnerships and resource mobilization around the newly adopted programme document through the development of a detailed Joint Partners' Engagement Strategy and a roadmap for strategic priorities for the Horn of Africa.


About UNDP

UNDP is the leading United Nations organization fighting to end the injustice of poverty, inequality, and climate change. Working with our broad network of experts and partners in 170 countries, we help nations build integrated, lasting solutions for people and the planet. The Africa Borderlands Centre is a flagship project of UNDP committed to enhancing opportunities for people living in Africa’s borderlands. The Centre offers specialized, expert knowledge and technical advice to enable the better design, implementation and adaptation of development programmes for border regions across Africa.

Learn more at https://www.undp.org/africa/africa-borderlands-centre.

About IGAD

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) is a Regional Economic Community (REC) in the Eastern Africa region comprised of eight member states namely, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, and Uganda. The Mission of IGAD is to promote regional cooperation and integration to add value to Member States’ efforts in achieving peace, security, and prosperity.

Learn more at https://igad.int/         


For more information, contact:

UNDP: Michelle Mendi Muita, Regional Programme Communications Specialist, michellemendi.muita@undp.org

IGAD: Nuur Mohamud Sheekh, Spokesperson for the Executive Secretary, IGAD, nuur.sheekh@igad.int