On September 26, Ambassador James Swan and USAID/East Africa Acting Regional Director Larry Meserve signed three bilateral agreements with the Government of the Republic of Djibouti (GORD), represented by the Djiboutian Minister Delegate for International Cooperation Mr. Ahmed Ali Silay. The signing of the three Agreements, for health, education and democracy and governance, represents a U.S. commitment of approximately $3.8 million.
In the health sector, resources will support the Ministry of Health to mitigate tuberculosis and ensure that Djibouti remains polio free. Additional resources from the U.S. Office of Disaster Assistance will assist Djibouti in its fight against malnutrition.
In the education sector, programs will promote quality education, strengthen teacher training and strategic planning, develop a sound management information system, assist parent teacher associations, provide training for out-of-school youth and advance girls’ education.
In the democracy and good governance sector, the current agreement will assist Djibouti to lay the groundwork for a free, fair and inclusive Presidential and Regional election in 2011.
In addition to bilateral support, the Republic of Djibouti also receives support from USAID/Washington for malnutrition, girls’ education, food aid and food security monitoring. Total USAID assistance to Djibouti in 2009 is therefore more than $7 million. This assistance is complimented by support from CJTF/HOA’s civil affairs programs, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Mega-Ports program and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Safe Skies for Africa program.
Ambassador Swan noted that these agreements are a sign of the U.S. Government’s commitment to advance a successful development agenda and that both countries look forward to continued cooperation. Mr. Meserve commented that “USAID is very pleased to have been working in Djibouti for nearly seven years, working closely with the Government and the people of Djibouti to achieve impressive results.” In collaboration with the Ministry of Health, child immunization rates in rural areas increased from 11% to 38% since 2004 and in conjunction with the Ministry of Education, primary school enrollment rates increased from 49% to 67%.
The Minister of Cooperation reiterated these sentiments saying that, “The Governments of Djibouti and the United States have developed dynamic cooperation since USAID was reopened in 2003 and that these agreements strengthen the priority sectors of the Government.”
The US Mission in Djibouti and USAID/East Africa are proud to continue their successful collaboration with a vital regional partner in the shared goal of improving the quality of life through healthcare, education and support for democracy and governance for all Djiboutians.