Africa RISING management completes monitoring visits to project sites in East and Southern Africa
The leadership team of the IITA-led Africa RISING project in East and Southern Africa recently concluded monitoring visits to project sites in Malawi, Zambia, and Tanzania to assess the status and progress of implementation of various project activities by partners. These took place between 15 and 22 February in Malawi and Zambia, and 21 and 31 March in Tanzania.
The monitoring team was lead by the Manager. Africa RISING West Africa and East/Southern Africa Projects, Irmgard Hoeschle-Zeledon, the Africa RISING ESA Chief Scientist, Mateete Bekunda, and on the Zambia leg of the visits by the USAID Zambia Mission Food Security Specialist Harry Ngoma.
“Overall, I can say that the work being implemented by our partners in all the project countries we visited is impressive. However, we also identified some issues that partners still need to address to ensure that we stay on course to achieve the research-in-development targets that we have committed to with our donor, USAID, and other stakeholders,” noted Hoeschle-Zeledon at the conclusion of the monitoring visit to Tanzania.
The monitoring visit was the first made by the management team since Phase II of the program launched in October 2016.
“This visit has given us an opportunity as the management team of the project to go one step beyond receiving reports submitted by partners and get to better understand them by verifying the actual status of activity implementation. We were able to discuss emerging operational challenges and opportunities with the partners and also take a good look at how activities are aligned with the overall Africa RISING vision of success,” added Bekunda.
While speaking at the end of the monitoring visit in Zambia, Ngoma lauded the implementation of activities by project partners, encouraging them to “keep their foot on the gas” in implementing project activities. He also noted that USAID was still in the process of revising its Global Food Security strategy. He also pointed out opportunities for filling some existing research gaps on some of the scaling activities being implemented by the project team.