Somalia livestock stakeholders meet in Uganda

By Asad Cabdullahi Mataan

The Stakeholder Consultative meeting was organised by AU-IBAR with an aim of assuring sustainable livestock exports from all Somali regions.

A total of 36 Somali participants from various Somali institutions participated in the discussions. Leading the delegations were the respective Livestock Ministers from Somaliland Hon.

Abdillahi Mohamed Dahir, Puntland State of Somalia Hon. Abdiweli Duale Elmi, SouthWest State of Somalia Hon. Madobe Nunow Mohamed, Jubaland State of Somalia Hon. Mohamed Nur Bulle, Galmudug State of Somalia Hon. Ahmed Dhiblawe Asir with the blessings of the Federal Minister of Livestock, Forestry and Range Hon. Sheikh Nur Mohamed Hassan, and, the Somali, Somaliland, Puntland and the Jubaland Chambers of Commerce and Industry, the seven quarantine stations in region including three of the export quarantine are located in Berbera namely Berbera United Quarantine, Berbera National Livestock Quarantine and Saudi Emirates international veterinary quarantine.

On the other hand, two quarantines located in Bosaso namely Bosaso national animal quarantine and Saudi Emirates Quarantine Bosaso, Jazeera Quarantine in Mogadishu and Jubba Mahjar quarantine in Kismayo and the in the presence of implementing partners from AU-IBAR, FAO, USAID, Terra Nuova and COOPI.

The meeting discussed common issues including animal health and safe cross-border livestock trade.

In the spirit of solidarity, the representatives of Somali livestock sector stakeholders upon shared principles, common goals and commitments to livestock depended livelihoods that unite the Somali peoples in their collective pursuit of inclusive and sustainable export trade and livestock development in the region.

Recognising that the Somali peoples share socio-cultural values, trade and livestock resources, the meeting resolved that inclusive strategies were required for animal disease surveillance and control. This will promote trade in livestock and livestock products for the benefit of the Somali peoples.

Given the vital role of livestock in generating incomes and contributing to food security for the Somali people’s; the negative sanitary impact of trade limiting diseases and the negative impact of livestock bans to the economies of the Somali region; and the particular weakness
of the export certification system including poor model of communication with importing countries; limited documentations citing reasons for rejections of livestock shipments; inadequate public sector control and enforcement of regulations; limited coordination between regions with both the quarantines and administrations working in isolation; absence of an arbitration body between Somalis and importing countries, and recognising the need for accountability and transparency within the quarantine system.

The meeting resolved that:

The Somali veterinary administrations in Somaliland, Puntland, Southwest, Galmudug, Jubaland and the Federal Government of Somalia commit to implement a long-term technical solution to the issue of recurrent ban of Somali livestock.

The Somali veterinary authorities to implement a strict and independent supervision, monitoring and quality control using consistent livestock certification and quarantine operations procedures and standards. Such efforts would sustainably prevent the imposition of trade restrictions on Somali livestock derived from the regions.

The Somali veterinary authorities to commit to transparent modalities of implementing harmonized export certification and quarantine standard operating procedures.

The Somali veterinary authorities to agree on a mechanism of transparent sharing of information on disease status, sanitary measures and livestock Market information and quarantine stations data. This will guide relations and harmonise strategies on trade and avoidance of trade restriction;

The Somali veterinary authorities to agree to build sustainable Livestock export improvement programs for safe trade in livestock and livestock products including; (i) adherence to OIE standards and importing country requirements, and (ii) evidence-based risk analysis for trade sensitive disease as the only option that allows for arbitration between the Somali and importing countries

The Somali veterinary authorities to organise expeditiously a standing technical committee to address issues in the quarantine operation activities and ensure and monitor that the recommendations herein are implemented.

The Somali veterinary authorities implement a harmonised certification system (i) movement permit (at production level, primary, secondary and tertiary markets), and (ii) an international veterinary certificate at the export quarantine stations.

The meetings fully and unequivocally supports the mission of the technical personnel from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and urge the relevant Somali personnel and institutions to warmly welcome and provide every information and data that will support lifting of the livestock ban.