Bank Group Education Experts Meet with Burkinabe Education Minister

27/05/2008
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Burkina Faso’s Education Minister, Marie Odile Bonkoungou, on Friday in Tunis paid a courtesy call on the AfDB Vice President in charge of operations, Zeinab El-Bakri, and her staff to discuss issues of common interest. Speaking during the meeting, Mrs. Bonkoungou called on participants come up with concrete measures aimed at revitalizing the regional centre for education and literacy in Africa (CREA). "I am pleased with this working session which will, without a doubt, lead to concrete actions that will bring happiness to adults who need knowledge in order to participate in development efforts. Our discussions will also be useful to youths in our country whose situation is preoccupying," she said.

She used the occasion to introduce CREA to participants at the technical meeting, noting that the organization was established in 1974 and comprised fifteen African countries. "Unfortunately, this institution has gone through challenging times which its member countries deplore. It was therefore agreed in 2006 to restore the institution’s past glory," the minister said. Burkina Faso is currently chairing the committee set up to oversee the relaunch of the institution.

"We have, with the support of the Francophonie, established a four-year technical and financial programme. (…). This programme for which we are seeking the support of the Bank Group comprises six components," she said.

Welcoming the minister, the AfDB acting director of the basic education, professional and technical training department, Sibry Tapsoba, said he hoped the discussions would help put CREA member countries on the path to growth. "It’s a pleasure for the Bank Group to receive you and your delegation here and to explore partnership opportunities with CREA within the literacy framework," Mr. Tapsoba said. He called on participants to engage in practical discussions. 

The African Development Bank Group is currently supporting many education projects on the continent. It is, on average, providing financing for three projects per country, ranging between 4.5 million Units of Account (US$ 7 million) for the smallest countries and UA 20 million (US$ 32 million) for the largest countries. The Bank Group has already financed four education projects in Burkina Faso; the fifth which is under implementation comprises, among others, the widening of access and the improvement of basic education and literacy quality.