The Regional Strategic Analysis and Knowledge Support System - Southern Africa (ReSAKSS-SA) facilitated by the International Water management Institute - Southern Africa Office (IWMI-SA) launched the Joint Sector Review (JSR) at the Mphophoma Training Centre, Swaziland, on March 18, 2015. The launch was attended by high profile representatives from the Swaziland government, including the Hon. Moses Vilakati, Minister of Agriculture, and Robert Thwala, Principal Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture. Other key participants included civil society organizations, the private sector, Christian-based organizations and traditional leadership. Charles Nhemachena, Regional Researcher - Agricultural Economics, IWMI, explained the significance and purpose of mutual accountability, the importance of using the JSR as a tool for operationalizing the mutual accountability framework at country level, the roadmap for undertaking a JSR, outputs and outcomes of the JSR, and deadlines that have to be met to ensure that the Swaziland JSR process is successful.
In his keynote address, the Hon. Moses Vilakati cited the importance of agriculture in Swaziland, and stated he was pleased that his country was one of the 11 countries selected by the African Union Commission to conduct JSRs this year. He further emphasized that launching the JSR implementation process in Swaziland is an integral part of the transition to evidence-based policy planning and implementation. Hon. Vilakati also stated that he believed the partnerships forged between the Ministry of Agriculture, African Union Commission (AUC), New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) Planning and Coordination Agency (NPCA), ReSAKSS-SA, Economic Development Commission for Southern Africa (EDCSA), country stakeholders and development partners will help improve agricultural policies and transformation of the sector in the country. In his conclusion, he stated that the JSR will act as a critical tool in encouraging a sustained acceleration of Swaziland National Agriculture Investment Plan (SNAIP) implementation through the respective commitments, and agreed action plans and targets.
Going forward, a steering committee chaired by the Ministry of Agriculture will be set up to lead the JSR process in Swaziland.
From left to right: Sibusiso Nhlengethwa, Research Officer - Statistics, IWMI, and Charles Nhemachena, Regional Researcher - Agricultural Economics, IWMI, who both worked collaboratively to put together the launch, and Freddy Magagula, Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) focal point for Swaziland.
Hon. Moses Vilakati presenting his keynote address at the launch of the JSR in Swaziland.
This article is written by Thokozani Dlamini, Communications Officer at International Water Management Institute.