Vacancy Announcement Number1558
Date of Issue08/08/2017
Deadline for Applications07/09/2017
Organizational UnitWest & Central Africa Div.
Duty StationYAOUNDE'
Duration of Assignment2 years

Organizational context

Duty Station:  Yaoundé, Cameroon or any other country office in West and Central Africa region.  

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is an international financial institution and a specialized United Nations agency dedicated to eradicating rural poverty and hunger. It does so by investing in rural people. IFAD finances programmes and projects that increase agricultural productivity and raise rural incomes, and  advocates at the local, national and international level for policies that contribute to rural transformation.

The Programme Management Department (PMD), under the leadership of an Associate Vice-President, is responsible for the overall programme of loans and grants of the Fund and is composed of five (5) regional divisions, a Programme Technical Advisory Division and an Environment and Climate Change Division.

The West and Central Africa Division (WCA) is responsible for developing and managing IFAD’s strategy for the region as a whole (24 countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, the Central African Republic, Chad, The Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo) and for individual countries, and within those strategies, for developing and managing its regional and country programmes. The drive towards aid effectiveness and harmonisation and support that is given to Joint Assistance Strategies, and the One UN initiative is an important focus of the Division’s work. IFAD’s goal in the regions is to enable rural poor people to gain the skills, knowledge, organization and build assets that they need to take full advantage of markets and economic opportunities, engage with service providers and participate in local development processes. Focus is increasingly being put on catalysing private investment, creating employment opportunities for rural youth and adapting to climate change.

Post's organizational accountability

Under the overall policy and management guidance and direct supervision of a Country Programme Manager, the Programme Officer (CO or HQ) is responsible for established programme/project coordination. The Programme Officer’s accountabilities/key results are:

  • Country Programme Support
  • Country Office Support
  • Partnership Building
  • Policy Development/Knowledge Management

Key results expected / Major functional activities

1. COUNTRY PROGRAMME SUPPORT: The Programme Officer provides a solid understanding of international practices and HQ procedures to ensure programme/project activities enhance the technical quality of IFAD country activities through effective programme (COSOP) and project (grants and loans) design, supervision, implementation, monitoring and evaluation (RIMS), reporting (PSR) and completion (PCR) activities. S/He also provides substantive contributions toward the development of advice and technical guidance in support of sustainable government strategies, policies and programmes to improve agricultural development and rural poverty reduction. The Programme Officer is further accountable for capacity building activities including identifying, analyzing, documenting, harmonizing and disseminating both national and local issues as well as conditions and best practices and lessons learned among partner development agencies.  Capacity building activities will include coordinating meetings, workshops and seminars with project management teams, government, partners and other stakeholders.

2. COUNTRY OFFICE SUPPORT: The Programme Officer is accountable for day-to-day administration and reporting in support of the CPM and for supervision of assigned Country Programme Associate / Assistant. In addition to human resources management, s/he has accountability for financial and material resources and related processes including managing contracts for services. S/He provides inputs to budget preparation and monitors expenditures, manages contract completion and certifies payments.

3. PARTNERSHIP BUILDING: As a key country team member, the Programme Officer enhances the CO’s relationships and collaborations with in-country counterparts through the identification of synergies and proposing coordinated strategies with multilateral/bilateral donors and civil-society organizations involved in agricultural development and rural poverty reduction. S/He establishes and maintains counterpart contacts to promote programme and project collaboration and harmonization as well as identifies financing opportunities with other donors.

4. POLICY DEVELOPMENT/KNOWLEDGE MANAGEMENT: As a key country team member, the Programme Officer participates in relevant policy meetings and events of interest to IFAD’s target groups and which involve the government, donors, and civil society, including NGOs, in order to develop an enabling environment for sustainable, pro-poor development. From an international best practices perspective, s/he analyzes evidenced based recommendations from projects to link the realities on the ground and the voices of the poor with the policies and programmes of the government. This will serve to enhance the empowerment of the rural poor and disadvantaged so that they can enter into partnerships at all levels of policy dialogue.

5. MANAGERIAL FUNCTIONS: The Programme Officer is accountable for integrity, transparency, and equity in the management of IFAD resources.

Impact of Key results / Key performance indicators

The Programme Officer maintains the standards for IFAD’s competence in development at the field level. Demonstrated technical expertise and credibility in country portfolio management creates the foundation for IFAD’s capacity and reputation for programme delivery and enhances its recognition as a reliable development partner. Substantive support in the development of country strategy, project design, partnership building and policy development provides the foundation for enhancing sustainable government strategies and policies to improve the livelihoods of the poor and other disadvantaged groups.

Representation / Work relationships

In the context of programme development and delivery, the Programme Officer ensures the exchange of information, advocates for programme and policy enhancements and ensures consistency and reliability in the provision of development assistance to the government. In collaboration with other members of the UN country team, bi-lateral development agencies, NGOs and country programme counterparts, s/he establishes and maintains relationships and projects the image of IFAD as a credible/reliable partner striving for harmonization of development activities.



  • Strategic thinking and organizational development: Personal influence (Level 1)
  • Demonstrating Leadership: Personal leadership and attitude to change (Level 1)
  • Learning, sharing knowledge and innovating: Continuously seeks to learn, shares knowledge and innovates (Level 1)
  • Focusing on clients: Focuses on clients (Level 1)
  • Problem solving and decision making: Demonstrates sound problem solving and decision making ability (Level 1)
  • Managing time, resources and information: Manages own time, information and resources effectively (Level 1)
  • Team Work: Contributes effectively to the team (Level 1)
  • Communicating and negotiating: Communicates effectively: creates understanding between self and others (Level 1)
  • Building relationships and partnerships: Builds and maintains effective working relationships (Level 1)
  • Managing performance and developing staff: Manages staff and teams effectively (Level 1)


  • Thorough knowledge of and proven experience in results based agriculture rural development projects.
  • Good knowledge of pro-poor policy approaches.
  • Strong analytical skills in order to identify systemic issues, both programmatic and operational, and develop viable solutions. Analytical skills are also essential for identifying opportunities to promote new strategies and initiatives with HQ, partner agencies and national government counterparts.
  • Communicate effectively with different counterparts (civil society, government authorities, local communities, project staff). Listens effectively to engage others.
  • Writes clearly, succinctly and convincingly.
  • Computer skills: thorough knowledge of PeopleSoft ERP as well as full command of Microsoft applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and common Internet applications.

Minimum recruitment qualifications


  • Advanced university degree from an accredited institution in rural development, agriculture, economics, rural finance, development policy or other job related fields.


  • At least five (5) years’ progressively responsible professional experience in programme design, supervision and loan/grant administration with International financial institutions, development cooperation agencies, etc.

Language requirements:

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in either English or French with a working knowledge of the other language is a requirement. Communication skills must include the ability to set out a coherent argument in presentations and group interaction

Other information

Applicants should note that IFAD staff members are international civil servants subject to the authority of the President of IFAD, and they may be assigned by him/her to any of the activities of IFAD, including field assignments and/or rotation within IFAD.

In the interest of making most cost effective use of funds and resources, we are only able to respond to applicants who are short-listed for interview. Candidates who do not receive any feedback within three months should consider their application unsuccessful

Candidates may be required to take a written test and to deliver a presentation as well as participate in interviews.

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