IITA’s remit in East Africa covers a vast region that expands from the East African Community, to the west and to the Horn of Africa in the north. We focus on seven countries, namely, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, and Tanzania. The major development challenges in the region include extreme poverty, as more than 70% of the population lives below the poverty line of US$1.25 a day, and chronic or cyclic food insecurity. Agriculture holds the potential to make positive differences in these areas as three-quarters of the population are engaged in agriculture in one way or another. Most of our R4D activities take place in Tanzania, Uganda, and Kenya, where our offices are located. In Tanzania, home of our regional hub, our activities focus on the sustainable intensification of mixed maize-legumes-livestock systems and on cassava and banana research. Uganda is at the forefront of our research on climate change in the coffee-banana systems and banana. We have an administration office in Kampala while our field offices, laboratories, and trials are at the National Crops Resources Research Institute (NACRRI), one of the research institutes of the NARO at Namulonge, approximately 27 km north of Kampala, where we conduct research on systems for the middle-altitude ecologies. Most of our molecular and biotechnology work takes place in Nairobi, Kenya at the Biosciences East and Central Africa (BecA) Hub at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI). We have also constructed a state-of-the art laboratory for mycotoxins at the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO) station at Katumani, and are in the process of building a modular plant for production of AflasafeKE01TM in the same area. Finally, we have also strengthened our activities in Ethiopia and South Sudan where we have established partnerships with the relevant government organizations, universities, and research institutions as an entry point for IITA’s R4D interventions. It is, however, in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where we have created our most significant outpost in East Africa. Here IITA has constructed an ultra-modern, environmentally friendly state-of-the-art science building to support our R4D activities in the country and region. The building was officially inaugurated by His Excellency, Dr Mrisho Jakaya Kikwete, President of the United Republic of Tanzania, in a colorful event held on 13 May 2013. Also in attendance were the former President of the United Republic of Tanzania, H.E. Benjamin Mkapa, and IITA Ambassador and former President of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo. The building has five cutting-edge laboratories among other facilities and can accommodate up to 50 researchers. It is open to our partners from other research institutions, and to local and international universities. The completion of this new science building offers new opportunities for research efficiency, partnership, and capacity development. With this new facility we will be able to expand our banana research program in addition to increasing our ongoing efforts to grow the cassava value chain. This increase in our Eastern Africa output will help us to secure the food and livelihoods of resource-poor smallholder farmers in the region. We operate in two other areas in Tanzania, one in Kibaha in the Coast region at the Sugarcane Research Institute (SRI) where we conduct field trials, and the other in Arusha at The World Vegetable Center and at the Nelson Mandela Institute where we conduct our banana breeding experiments. Through our work in Eastern Africa, IITA will continue to address the current, persistent, and traditional agricultural challenges of the region, while also responding to new developments, both opportunities and threats, at the institute and hub levels through strategic interventions.  

Countries in Eastern Africa Hub