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AUDA-NEPAD, Norad partner to accelerate soil health for sustainable food systems in Africa

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The African Union Development Agency-NEPAD (AUDA-NEPAD) and the Government of Norway have entered into a partnership aimed at enhancing soil health for sustainable food systems across Africa.

The partnership marks a significant milestone in addressing the pressing issue of soil health on the continent. “This ambitious 3-year Programme is designed to support African Union member States in implementing the resolutions of the Africa Fertilizer and Soil Health Summit, said the Director of Agriculture, Food Security, and Environmental Sustainability at AUDA-NEPAD Estherine Lisinge-Fotabong.

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She noted that the initiative aims to leverage policy, practice, and research to effectively manage soil health and advance agricultural sustainability in Africa.

Lisinge-Fotabong emphasized the importance of the partnership in facilitating the domestication of the summit resolutions by AU Member States and expressed gratitude to the Government of Norway for its unwavering commitment to the African Agenda and, longstanding partnership with AUDA-NEPAD.

The Norway Minister of International Development, Anne Beathe Tvinnereim underscored the significance of the partnership in implementing the outcome of the Africa Fertilizer and Soil Health Summit.

Tvinnereim noted that Norway’s chairmanship of the Development Partners Coordination Group, with the Minister, emphasized the importance of projects yielding tangible results. “The partnership with AUDA-NEPAD is deemed critical in achieving meaningful impact on the ground, particularly in optimizing data and information for active monitoring and evaluation of policies and farming practices’ impact on soil health”, said the Minister.

The launch, held on the margins of the Africa Fertilizer and Soil Health Summit, aligns with the summit’s focus on investing in healthy soils for healthy diets, healthy people, and a healthy planet. Against the backdrop of a worsening climate crisis, the importance of healthy soils in increasing productivity, enhancing resilience, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions cannot be overstated.

“Monitoring soil health is paramount to tracking progress and ensuring accountability to summit commitments,” said Lisinge-Fotabong who emphasized, that sustained support and innovative approaches are imperative for the long-term investment in soil health restoration, despite the few immediate benefits.

African Union Development Agency-NEPAD (AUDA-NEPAD) is the development agency of the African Union mandated by the Assembly of Heads of State and Government to coordinate and execute priority regional and continental projects to promote regional integration towards the accelerated realization of Agenda 2063.

Judith Akolo
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