Scientific Officer, African Union Inter-African Phytosanitary Council at CABI - Centre for Agriculture and Biosciences International
CABI is an international not-for-profit organization that improves people’s lives by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment. CABI is an intergovernmental organization that can trace its origins back to 1910. Our 50 member countries guide and influence our core areas of work, which include International Development and Publishing.
We have over 500 staff based in 16 countries. We have offices in Brazil, China, Ghana, India, Kenya, Malaysia, Pakistan, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, the UK, the USA and Zambia.
CABI’s Knowledge Business
CABI produces key scientific publications, including CAB Abstracts – the world-leading abstracting and indexing database covering applied life sciences. We also publish multimedia compendia, books, eBooks and full text electronic resources aiming to further science and its application to real life. CABI invests its publishing surpluses directly into development projects, helping to improve livelihoods worldwide.
International Development projects and research
Through knowledge sharing and science, CABI helps address issues of global concern such as improving global food security and safeguarding the environment. We do this by helping farmers grow more and lose less of what they produce, combating threats to agriculture and the environment from pests and diseases, protecting biodiversity from invasive species, and improving access to agricultural and environmental scientific knowledge.
The African Union (AU) is a Pan-African body charged with the responsibility of spearheading Africa’s rapid integration and sustainable development by promoting unity, solidarity, cohesion and cooperation among the peoples of Africa, as well as developing new partnerships worldwide. Within the AU Commission, the Department of Agriculture Rural Development Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment (DARBE) of the AU Commission (AUC), leads the AU’s efforts to promote agricultural development and sustainable environmental management across the continent. The Inter-African Phytosanitary Council of the African Union (AU-IAPSC) is a Specialized Technical Office of the Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, Blue Economy and Sustainable Environment (DARBE) and one of the ten Regional Plant Protection Organization (RPPO) of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC). AU-IAPSC is mandated to coordinate and provide support to the protection of plant resources for the welfare and economic development in the Member States of the African Union (AU). Further, AU-IAPSC coordinates and advocates for AU Member States to efficiently and sustainably manage plant pests, strengthen the capacity of Member States to be in compliance with international phytosanitary standards and to raise awareness among all stakeholders; advocate for and coordinate the harmonization of pesticide registration in Africa; strengthen and enhance the capacity of the continental plant health system and National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs). In order to effectively attain its mandate, AU-IAPSC collaborates with key actors in the public and private sector, development partners, research organizations, academia, amongst others.
Job title: Scientific Officer, African Union Inter-African Phytosanitary Council
Grade: Hay Band 5 (P3 Step 1)
Reporting to: Director, AU-IAPSC
Direct reports: None
Key peer group: Project Officers, Research Officers, CABI scientists
Location: Yaounde, CAMEROON
Agriculture is central to the African economy, accounting for about 40 percent of GDP, 15 percent of exports and between 60 to 80 percent of employment on the continent. Moreover, about 75 percent of intra-African trade is in agricultural products. It is therefore expected that agricultural commodities will be major contributor to trade in the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Hence, improving the overall performance of the agricultural sector will be vital to achieving sustainable socio-economic development of African societies and food security.
Plant protection activities and programs for Africa are envisioned to focus and prioritize information exchange, regional standard development, inputs into international standard setting and regional pesticide programs. In addition, uptake of integrated pest management (IPM) programs for building national capacities in member states is key in building strong plant health systems for better livelihoods, enhanced trade and biodiversity. These measures ought to thus focus on, compliance of AU member states with international phytosanitary standards and enhancing effective participation of AU members states to standards setting processes; influencing policy and decision makers to contribute to improved and strengthened plant pest management in Africa; addressing the negative effect of and risks of pandemic and exotic invasive plant pest species on livelihoods and biodiversity in Africa and supporting capacity enhancement and tailor-made training program that address specific plant health challenges. In this regard and as part of the effort to further strengthen regional plant health coordination and strengthen the capacity of AU Member States National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs), the African Union has developed the Continental Plant Health Strategy. The Plant Health Strategy for Africa (PHSA) will serve as a harmonized framework to deal with any plant health risks that might undermine effective realization of goals and objectives of Africa’s development frameworks and strategies. The Strategy envisages minimizing duplication of efforts while helping to achieve synergy through leveraging the resources and capabilities of different players and provide guidance and direction to the plant health efforts that are much needed on the continent. The Strategy seeks to address components geared towards ensuring phytosanitary security under the implementation of African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement. CABI is part of the broader team that participated in development of the strategy and will provide Technical and organisational Support in year one of this project.
This is a one (1) year contract. **
Purpose of the role:
The incumbent will facilitate the implementation of the Strategic Objectives of Plant Health Strategy for Africa, 2022 – 2036, by the Inter-African Phytosanitary Council of the African Union (AU-IAPSC). The Plant Health Strategy for Africa is one of the strategies for operationalizing the AU SPS Policy Framework.
· Facilitate the process of identifying implementation requirements for the Plant Health Strategy for Africa and initiate the development of an implementation plan
· Facilitate the process of identifying NPPOs phytosanitary needs and develop a teaching curriculum (for NPPOs)
· Facilitate the provision of phytosanitary technical assistance to AU Member States in support of the African Union SPS Policy Framework
· Facilitate AU-IAPSC to expand Member States' understanding of existing phytosanitary best practices such as Pest Risk Analysis (PRA), surveillance, Inspection and other official controls for market access
· Facilitate stakeholder consultations on plant health at national (NPPOs) and regional (RECs) level
· Facilitate stakeholder consultations on the implementation of an emergency funds for invasive species (as requested by AU STC on Agriculture, Rural Development, Water and Environment)
· Facilitate meetings and workshops supporting Member States on the uptake and adoption of Electronic Phytosanitary Certificates (e-Phyto).
· Deliver on the critical implementation elements as identified in the Plant Health Strategy for Africa, namely:
i. PHSA Theory of Change which sets the business case for the Strategy
ii. The Results Framework and Monitoring and Evaluation
iii. Key Actors, their Roles and Responsibilities
iv. Coordination Mechanisms of PHSA
v. Success Factors
vi. Budgetary Considerations
vii. Risk Assessment, Mitigation and Management
· In consultation with the Director AU-IAPSC, validate on a regular basis, all technical reports related to the implementation of the Plant Health Strategy for Africa.
Knowledge & Skills
· At least 7 years professional experience working in the field of plant protection/health in Africa with at least 1 year working experience in the field of SPS;
· Experience in working with International Organizations or Institutions;
· Demonstrated experience in implementation of partner funded projects;
· Experience in facilitation of stakeholder engagements/workshops;
· Excellent written and oral communications skills in English; the working knowledge of another AU working language will be an added value;
· Experience at management level would be an asset.
Education & Qualifications
Master’s degree in Crop/Plant Protection, Agronomy, or other related area.
· Highly motivated, organized and adaptable, with strong inter-personal and communication skills. Proactive and enthusiastic in communicating with and supporting colleagues.
· Comfortable working both independently or as a collaborative team player.
· Able to work under pressure and deliver high quality products to tight deadlines, with flexibility. Including occasional out-of-hours working.
· Managing and prioritising a high workload with a flexible approach to changing environments.
This job description is not intended to be exhaustive. It is expected that the post holder and CABI will adopt a flexible attitude and accept that the duties may have to be varied according to circumstances, in particular changing corporate requirements and individual development needs.
CABI is an equal opportunities employer and welcomes applications from candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, disability, religion, sexual orientation or marital status. No applicant will be disadvantaged by conditions which cannot be shown to be justified and selection will be based on merit.
Indicative basic salary of US$ 37,453.2 (P3 Step1) per annum plus other related entitlements e.g. Post adjustment (48% of basic salary=$17,977.56), Housing allowance US$ 18,396.00 (per annum), and pension US $8,328 per annum for internationally recruited staff.
How to apply
To apply please submit your CV and a cover letter via our online recruitment portal at www.cabi.org/careers by 28th January, 2022