H.E Gaston Sindimwo, 1st Vice President of the Republic of Burundi graces the lanuch of EAHRC in Bujumbura
East African Health Research Commission (EAHRC) Headquarters, Kigobe, Bujumbura, Burundi, December, 2018: H.E. Gaston Sindimwo, the 1st Vice President of the Republic Burundi graced the official launch of the Headquarters of the East African Health Research Commission (EAHRC) located in Kigobe, Bujumbura City, Burundi that took place on 4th December 2018.
Also present were Hon. Isabelle Ndahayo, Minister to the Presidency in charge of EAC Affairs; Hon. Thadee Ndikumana, Minister of Health; Hon. Gaspard Banyankimbona, Minister of High Education; Hon. Freddy Mbonimpa, Mayor of Bujumbura; Hon. Jean Baptiste Nzorironkankuze, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health; and the Secretary General of the East African Community, Amb. Liberat Mfumukeko.
The launch also brought together other Government Officials from Burundi; Diplomatic Corps accredited to Bujumbura; EAC Secretariat and EAC Institutions Executives; Members of EAHRC Commissioners; Stakeholders and Staff.
The 1st Vice President commended the EAC Heads of State Summit for establishing the Institution and the EAC Council of Ministers for allocating Bujumbura City to be the Permanent Headquarters of the Commission. He pledged the Government of Burundi’s full support to the Institution including availing land for the construction of its Headquarter premises, as per the Headquarters Agreement.
Addressing the guests at the launch, the Secretary General of the East African Community, Amb. Liberat Mfumukeko said the operationalisation of the EAHRC commenced in July 2015 but due to various factors, the Commission was able to relocate to Bujumbura in January 2018.
He noted that the relocation was achieved through close collaboration between the East African Community Secretariat and the Government of the Republic of Burundi. The Secretary General commended the Government of Burundi for having facilitated the Commission to procure the headquarters and to relocate to Bujumbura. He urged the Republic of Burundi to fast track the process of granting land where to build the permanent headquarters of the EAHRC.
He also commended the Commission for achieving several milestones since its operationalisation and urged the staff to keep the speed and the commitment high.
Amb. Mfumukeko commended the EAHRC for developing a costed Digital Regional East African Community Health (Digital REACH) Strategic Plan 2019-2028, which will, among others, implement two (2) of the three (3) sub priorities under the priority of Strengthening of Health Research and Development as approved by the 19th Summit of the EAC Heads of States.
He said the Costed Digital Health Strategic Plan had been approved by the 17th Meeting of the EAC Sectoral Council on Health that directed the East African Health Research Commission Secretariat to mobilize resources to implement the strategy. In this context, the Secretary General called upon development partners to support the Community to implement the digital health strategic plan.
On his part, the EAHRC Executive Secretary, Prof Gibson Kibiki disclosed that the vision of the Commission is a healthy and prosperous community built on evidence-driven policy and practice, which emanate from high quality research.
The mission is to improve health and well-being of the citizens of the Community by generating, accessing, capturing, assessing, synthesizing, sharing, disseminating, and utilising health research and findings, as well as technological development that are suitable and relevant to the Community and its people.
He asserted that the broad objective of the Commission is to promote, facilitate, and coordinate the conduct and application of health research for the improvement of health and for the wellbeing of the people of East Africa.
In regard to Research environment in the EAC Partner States, Prof Kibiki disclosed that the Commission had carried out baseline assessments and needs on ethics review frameworks that revealed many gaps and challenges. In order to address those gaps and challenges, the Commission was developing a work plan with the aim of creating a good research environment for the development of Research and Development.
The Executive Secretary highlighted some of the significant achievements made by the Commission since its operationalisation in July 2015, which include, among others :-
- The development of the EAHRC Strategic Plan 2016-2021 approved by EAC Council of Ministers and its operationalisation;
- The development of the Digital Regional East African Community Health (Digital REACH) initiative which is a coordination mechanism that brings together stakeholders from the EAC region, development partners and other key players outside the region to improve health outcomes across the EAC. The initiative is a novel, and ground-breaking strategy to transform the health service delivery and health outcomes in the region through scaled uptake and utilisation of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT); Digital Health Technology is one of the Health Sector priorities approved by EAC Heads of States for the next 10 years;
- Establishment of the Young East African Health Research Scientists’ (YEARS’) Forum which is an initiative aiming to empower East African Community (EAC) young researchers to be able to shape the future of research for health in the region, the initiative was approved by 15th meeting of EAC Council of Ministers;
- Organization of the East African Health and Scientific Conference (EAHSC) which is an EAC biennial event convened in East Africa by the EAHRC in collaboration with a host EAC Partner State;
- Establishment of One-Stop Center for Health Information in East Africa operational through the web portal (www.eahealth.org) which is the official comprehensive compendium of health information in East Africa;
- Publishing EAHRC Scientific Journals that are contributing to share with the global scientific community the scientific work part of the EAC region; and
- Participating in and facilitating a number of other regional programs and projects.
For more information please contact:
Office of the Executive Secretary
East African Health Research Commission (EAHRC)
East African Community
Quartier KIGOBE, Avenue des Etats Unis, n°71
B.P. 350 Bujumbura
Tel: +(257) 22 27 99 80/1/2
An Institution of the East African Community, is a mechanism for making available to the Community, advice upon all matters of health and health-related research and findings necessary for knowledge generation, technological development, policy formulation and practice; and for related matters. It is the principal advisory institution to the EAC on health Research and Development (R&D).