Staff Profile

The Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases Operations(ECTAD) Unit for Eastern and the Horn of Africa region is managed by a multi-disciplinary work force with vast experiences in their areas of speciality.
Read below the summary profiles of the current staff.

Bouna Diop

Dr. Bouna Diop is the Regional Manager. He was appointed to this position in January 2010.

Dr. Diop started his career in 1985 as head of service in charge of veterinary services control in the port and airport of Dakar. In 1986 he was nominated to be the Chief of the Regional Livestock Service in Diourbel. From 1987 to 1988, he was appointed Technical Director of PDESO (Projet de Développement de l’Elevage au Sénégal-Oriental). In 1988, he became Chief of Regional Livestock Service in Louga and Regional Coordinator of PNVA (National Programme for Rural Extension). From 1991 to 2000, he served as National Coordinator for PARC Senegal and Deputy Director of Livestock Department.

In 2000, he was designated to prepare and launch the PACE (Pan African Program for the control of Epizootics) Component in Senegal before being recruited in December 2000 by AU-IBAR as the Regional Coordinator for PACE for Western and Central Africa. He joined FAO in October 2007 as International Consultant in this capacity he coordinated the INAP program.

Dr. Diop holds a Doctorate degree in Veterinary Medicine from the Inter-state School of Sciences and Veterinary Medicine of Dakar and a master’s degree in management from the Centre of Economic Financial and Banking Studies in Paris.

In addition Dr. Diop has specialized trainings in Epidemiology in Montpellier/France, project analysis and evaluation in Paris and other courses/seminars in other institutions in Senegal, France, USA etc. He’s OIE certificated expert for PVS and Gap Analysis missions.

Tesfai Tseggai

Dr. Tesfai Tseggai graduated from the Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria (a school supported by the Kansas State University, USA); as a scholar of the African American Institute.

He holds a post graduate degree in immunology from the Ecole National Vétérinaire, Lyon, France; as a scholar of the French Foreign Assistance. Tesfai started his career in East Africa as a field and laboratory veterinarian in the Ministry of Agriculture, Ethiopia. After his post doctoral degree in France he worked with a major vaccine producing French company (Rhone Merieux), for 4 years in France, and 17 years in Athens, Georgia, USA, until the company came to be called Merial Inc..

He was responsible for the transfer of the vaccine company Rhone Merieux from the New Jersey based vaccine/diagnostic kit production facility of Pittman Moore to Athens. He is very familiar with the vaccine production and licensing procedures especially the US Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Ch.9. In the US, he specialized in both diagnostic kit development for several small animal diseases, such as Canine Heartworm, Feline Leukaemia and others, as well as vaccines, while at the same time in developing methods of vaccine QC testing. He later switched to conducting research in vaccine development where his main field was the rabies vaccine development, research and control. He was a senior research scientist in the development of the first Canarypox vectored feline and canine rabies vaccines in the USA. He had won the Annual Accomplishment and the Extra Mile Awards prior to leaving the company in 2004. He joined the University of Georgia in Athens GA, USA, as a Research Scientist in the Department of Pathology, Rabies Section, where he was involved in rabies DNA vaccine clinical trials.

In 2006, Tesfai joined the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) first as an Animal Health Expert in South Sudan, and later as a Chief Technical Advisor and Team Leader in the control of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and other Transboundary Animal Diseases (TAD) in Nigeria (3 yrs), and Bangladesh (2 yrs). He identified the first Avian Influenza virus in a flock in South Sudan. He successfully managed the above programs funded by the USAID (Sudan, Nigeria), and World Bank (Bangladesh) before joining the FAO- ECTAD in Nairobi in 2013, as a Laboratory Specialist for the Emerging Pandemic Threats (EPT) program supported by the USAID. Besides the regional laboratory engagement, he provides technical support to the FAO’s Emergency Center for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD) of Eastern Africa.

Okuthe Samuel

Dr. Samuel Oyieke Okuthe currently works as an Epidemiologist for ECTAD unit in Nairobi. His work involves assisting in the preparation and formulation of concept notes, proposals and technical policy briefs on HPAI and emerging TADs, liaising with various stakeholders and Departments of Veterinary Services in the region to coordinate project objectives, organising and assisting in the execution of training workshops and technical meetings, monitoring and evaluating implementation of projects in collaboration with implementing partners.

Dr. Okuthe graduated in 1987 with a Bachelors degree in Veterinary Medicine from the Univeristy of Nairobi and was immediately employed by the Veterinary Research Centre of the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI). He worked on the treatment and management of captive wild animals for research. The project also involved work on TADs surveillance especially rinderpest and both Bovine and Caprine pleuropneumonia and also research work on buffalo derived theileriosis up till 1992 when he undertook an MSc from the University of Reading in Veterinary Epidemiology and Economics with emphasis on Computerised Systems Analysis, Livestock Economics, Project Planning and Management, Quantitative Methods and Modeling, his dissertation was on the role of GIS in animal health with a case study on buffalo derived Theileriosis in Kenya. At KARI Dr. Okuthe worked as a Senior Research officer in Epidemiology and Economics Division. He completed his PhD thesis from the University of Reading in 1999.

He later worked in collaboration with ILRI mainly on participatory epidemiological studies in various livestock production systems in Kenya and as a consultant for Terra Nuova, an International NGO working in Somalia between 2000 and 2002 on strengthening of Veterinary Institutions in Somaliland that culminated in the production of a Master plan for the Ministry of Livestock, Somaliland. He also worked as a Project Manager with Terra Nuova on other programmes in Somaliland namely “Expanding the Network for the Provision of Supportive Services for the Somali Livestock Industry” and “Improvement and Diversification of Somali Livestock Trade and Marketing”

He worked with FAO-Kenya office as an Epidemiologist from December 2006 to June 2008 on a project on Early Detection, Prevention and Control of avian influenza.

Dr. Okuthe is also an external examiner in Veterinary Epidemiology and Economics, Wildlife Management and Bio-medical Laboratory Science for both undergraduate and postgraduate students at the University of Nairobi, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine.

Kimani Tabitha

Dr. Tabitha Kimani holds a Bachelors degree in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Nairobi and a Masters degree in Agricultural Economics from Egerton University. Her multi-displinary training has enabled her gather a wealth of experience in the fields of: animal health and livestock economics,agricultural production, trade and marketing; project management and analysis; policy formulation and analysis; and agribusiness management.

At ECTAD-RAHC Eastern Africa region, she works as a socio-economic, livestock production and biodiversity. Dr. Tabitha’s ToR encompass three themes

1) Evidence and support for policy development – She provides policy makers and governments with analytical tools and information to better understand the systems they are trying to influence to reduce disease introduction and impact, and to enhance productivity. Such evidence is generated through analysis of: livestock based livelihoods; Livestock value chains and trade flows; socio-economic impacts of animal diseases and trade flows, and risk assessments.

2) Animal health interventions –works closely with governments on animal health interventions and their appropriateness, acceptability, sustainability, cost effectiveness and institutionalization of the interventions proposed. Interventions considered under this theme are: compensation plans, contingency plans, vaccination, surveillance and biosecurity

3) Future of animal health - helps FAOand countries to prioritize and plan for the future - looking at other diseases and developments within the animal health services and within the livestock sector. Issues considered under this theme: priority diseases, animal health services, changes in the production system and the implication for diseases.

To achieve her tasks, she works closely with the other thematic experts at FAO-ECTAD.

Before joining ECTAD she worked with the Ministry of Livestock Development in various capacities through out the country before being appointed to head the Economics unit at the Department of Veterinary Services.

Rose Kibanya

Ms. Rose Kibanya is the Operations Assistant at ECTAD Eastern Africa.

She manages all the administrative tasks and operation duties pertaining to the project planning and implementation.

Rose has worked in the Agricultural and Industrial sectors in Kenya for eight years before joining FAO Sudan as a Finance/Travel assistant and later FAO-ECTAD as a Project Assistant .

She holds an Honours degree in Economics and Sociology from Egerton University and is currently pursuing a diploma in Project Management at Premese Africa - Nairobi.

John Njuguna

Mr. John Njuguna is the Logistician/senior driver at RAHC Eastern Africa. He started working with FAO-ECTAD in 2007. John holds an advanced Diploma in Purchasing and Supplies Management from Nairobi Institute of Business Studies and a Diploma in Logistics and Transport Managment from Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT, Kenya).

Mr. Njuguna has a lot of experience in logistics and transport management and initially worked with FAO in South Sudan as a logistician assistant for three years. In addition, Mr. Njuguna also holds computer certificates in International Computer Driving License (ICDL), User Support Professional (A+) and Network Support specialist (N+). He also holds a class BCE driving license with over 16 years driving experience.

Joshua Kimutai

Mr. Joshua Kimutai holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Laboratory Technology from Makerere University, College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources & Biosecurity, and a Master’s degree in Molecular Medicine from the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. Joshua has co-authored a paper on "Molecular characterization of human parainfluenza virus type 1 in infants attending Mbagathi District Hospital, Nairobi, Kenya: a retrospective study." He also has five years experience in the laboratory sector, working in the National Influenza Center, under the USAMRU-K DEID influenza surveillance program, which served to: Detect local influenza outbreaks; Provide isolates for the WHO vaccine pool for vaccine component determination that protects not only the US forces in foreign missions but also the general public; Detect any emerging strains that could have pandemic potential.

Joshua did a six month internship with ECTAD Eastern Africa region prior to becoming the Programme Associate. His work involves:

i) Implementation of the IDENTIFY project activities in the region including Monitoring and Evaluation functions to assess the project impact,

ii) Compilation of genomic information on TADs,

iii) Follow-up of the regional surveillance and laboratory networks activities in the region.

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