EAAPP reduced poverty and created jobs
The recently published Implementation Completion and Results Report (ICRR) of the World Bank has shown that the Eastern Africa Agricultural Productivity Programme (EAAPP) is a perfect model for poverty reduction and welfare improvement in Africa.
According to the report, more than 7.7 million people were lifted above the poverty line during EAAPP Phase I. Poverty reduction was embedded in the project design because the project targeted commodities mostly consumed by the relatively poor and which were considered food security products.
According to the ICRR, at the beginning of the project, 13.7 percent of households self reported as poor, 40 percent very poor and 30.1 per cent moderately poor, representing a total of 83.8 per cent of all EAAPP beneficiaries. By the end of phase 1, only 52.6 per cent of these same beneficiaries reported themselves as poor or very poor, a reduction of more than 30 per cent in the poverty category.
The report explains that increased income levels from the use and application of the technologies, innovations and management practices enabled many households to invest in several livelihood improving initiatives and in additional income generating activities and sent their children to better schools.
“With a per capita investment of less than US$ 80 per household, or US$15 per individual, the EAAPP model can therefore be considered as an efficient poverty reduction instrument in rural areas,” the report asserts.
In terms of job creation, EAAPP supported the establishment of 410 agro-business units in the four programme countries, with a total membership of 9,030 persons. An estimated 1.67 million people performed tasks or did jobs in the EAAPP intervention areas as a result of the labour intensive production and value addition activities implemented in the project. More than half of these workers (57) percent were female.
ASARECA role was key
As the regional coordinating organisation, ASARECA mastered the convening role for EAAPP, and enhanced consensus building and collaboration of the National Agricultural Research Systems (NARS) to contribute to the AU/NEPAD’s CAADP Pillar I, which focuses on revitalizing, reforming and expanding Africa’s agricultural research, technology dissemination and adoption.
ASARECA facilitated strategic meetings for the four countries to develop operational frameworks for the RCoEs; define the responsibilities of each RCoE to the sub-regional stakeholders; define the mode of operation of the RCoEs individually and in relation to others; define outputs and the manner in which they will be shared amongst participating countries and other non participating countries in the sub-region.
“Right from the planning, preparatory stage through to the end, there was a continuous process of consultation between stakeholders regionally and nationally leading to evolution of a regional attitude in an environment where regional project research was relatively new,” the report notes. “This averted an anticipated risk of centres of excellence concentrating on national objectives and sidelining regionality. “
Article by Ben Ilakut
ASARECA, Communication and Knowledge Hub