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AFRA Holds 29th Technical Working Group Meeting

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From left to right: Kwaku Aning, Chairman of GAEC, Dazhu Yang, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of TC, Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Ghana, and Shaukat Abdulrazak, Director, Division for Africa (Photo: IAEA)

The African Regional Cooperative Agreement for Research, Development and Training Related to Nuclear Science and Technology (AFRA), with the support of the IAEA, held its 29th Technical Working Group Meeting (TWGM) in Accra, Ghana from 9-13 July 2018.

The meeting brought together AFRA Committees’ Members, National Coordinators and IAEA staff to review programmes, discuss the establishment of regional designated centres and endorse the new Regional Cooperative Framework for 2019-2023.

Over the five-day meeting, AFRA National Coordinators and IAEA staff engaged in open dialogue on past activities in Africa, reviewed new and potential funding opportunities, deliberated on the technical cooperation (TC) programme for 2020–2021, and discussed the continued priority areas including safety, human health and nutrition, food and agriculture and human resource development.

The meeting was addressed by Benjamin Nyarko, Director General of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), Sabbiti Baguma, AFRA Chair, Kwaku Aning, Chairman of GAEC, Kwabena Frimpong-Boateng, Ghana’s Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dazhu Yang, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Technical Cooperation and Shaukat Abdulrazak, Director of the IAEA Division for Africa. Speakers shared their appreciation for the dedicated work of AFRA. IAEA representatives conveyed the Agency’s continued support for the programme. In addition, specific issues such as closing funding gaps and the importance of timely quality reporting in order to better measure impact over time were highlighted.

Dazhu Yang commended the group for its diligence in maintaining focus on improving the AFRA programme and for the continued efforts to expand the programme’s reach. He noted efforts to align activities with the Sustainable Development Goals and the African Union Vision 2063, as well as the positive implementation of the new AFRA RCF 2019–2023.

The meeting concluded with recommendations to review AFRA Guidelines and Procedures, to consider another High-Level Policy Seminar to assess progress achieved towards the implementation of the Plan of Action, and to review the AFRA programme and management structure.

Participants at the 29th AFRA TWGM. (Photo: IAEA)

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