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Best Practices/Lessons Learned

NSA CASE Project- Organizational Structures that Maximize Accountability

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Save the Children International

With the endorsement of the National Nutrition Program (NNP) by the Federal Government of Ethiopia (FGoE), which emphasizes a multi-sectoral approach to nutrition programming and coordination, various signatory sector ministries, including the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), have taken steps to fulfil their roles outlined in the national program. Despite clear directives in NNP I, NNP II, Seqota Declaration, and the NSAS to integrate nutrition into sectoral strategic plans and activities, Ministries like the MOA faced organizational and capacity limitations at federal, regional, and district (woreda) levels for operationalizing the NNP and NSAS.

The Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) with its distinctive organizational structure comprising four major divisions overseen at the state minister level, all reporting to the Minister. The organizational setup of the regional Bureau of Agricultures (BOAs) aligns with the federal structure. Various directorates in the regional BOAs maintain a clear line of communication with the corresponding divisions and directorates at the federal MOA. However, a similarly organized and functional structure for nutrition at the regional level and beyond was lacking.

At the regional level, existing structures lacked organization and functionality, hindering effective coordination, mainstreaming, and integration of nutrition initiatives. There was a lack of accountability between federal and regional nutrition structures, impacting communication and linkages. Additionally, nutrition focal points at the regional level lacked the mandate and capacity to coordinate effectively, limiting their influence on prioritizing and integrating nutrition into regular agriculture programs and plans.

Lastly, the absence of government (Civil Service Commission and MOA)-approved federal and regional food and nutrition structures and positions impeded FNCO and BOAs from coordinating and operationalizing the NSAS implementation.

NSA CASE project in coordination with Ministry of Agriculture and regional Bureau of Agriculture strategized to establish and strengthen organizational structure both at the federal MOA and regional BOAs that can deliver on nutrition.

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