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ActionAid official ends four-day working visit

Aug 7, 2012, 11:15 AM

The head of ActionAid’s Country Coordination for the West Africa Country Group Cardinal Uwishaka left The Gambia on Monday 6 August after a four-day working visit, his first to The Gambia since he took office in June 2012.

The purpose of Uwishaka’s visit was to familiarize himself with and support the work of ActionAid International The Gambia and its critical partners including the Gambia government and UN agencies.

Cardinal Ushwishaka is based at the International Secretariat Hub Office in Nairobi.  He joined ActionAid with extensive development management experience and has served in leadership positions with various international organisations in West, East and Southern Africa and in Eastern Europe.

He holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration and a Post Graduate in Human Rights Law.

During his visit, Cardinal Uwishaka met with the staff of AAITG to discuss the International Secretariat’s new ways of working, the roadmap towards the development of the new Gambia Country Strategy Paper (CSP) and membership development.

During a meeting with the chairperson of the AAITG Board, Mrs. Janet Sallah Njie, the issue of the board’s involvement in and ownership of the CSP development process and the provision of leadership to ensure effective governance oversight were discussed. The same issues were discussed with other members of the AAITG Board. 

At the Brufut Women Vegetable Garden, the president of the group, Mai Bojang, commended ActionAid for the support being provided, especially in the area of water supply. She cited many benefits brought about by the garden, most notably the education of their children, food security and the overall health of the family. 

Uwishaka later visited MUTAPOLA, the network of women living with HIV, where the coordinator Oley Jarju, highlighted key successes through their partnership with ActionAid. She however stated that stigma and discrimination remain a major challenge for the organisation.

Speaking at the end of his visit, Cardinal Uwishaka said: “I hope my visit has helped to identify and agree on proposals for ensuring synergies between relevant steps in the country strategy paper development, membership development processes, and other relevant strategic issues to ensure programme quality and effectiveness”.

He also called for increased support to be provided, especially in the areas of farm inputs such as seeds, fertiliser and improved technology for women farmers.

Cardinal Uwishaka left The Gambia today for Senegal where he will hold meetings with the country director, staff and partners of ActionAid Senegal.