AFRAC Holds Training Workshop for its Peer Evaluators
The African Accreditation Cooperation (AFRAC) peer evaluators course was held from 1 to 2 May 2017 and attended by 18 peer evaluators and trainee evaluators from the Egyptian Accreditation Council (1), Ethiopian National Accreditation Office (3), Kenya Accreditation Service (2), Mauritius Accreditation Service (2), Tunisian Accreditation Council (1), South African National Accreditation System (5) and Southern African Development Community Accreditation Service (4). It was very ably facilitated by Mr. Mahmoud Eltayeb, who is a seasoned Lead Evaluator with AFRAC and ARAC.
The course, which was held in conjunction with the 2017 AFRAC mid-term meetings, was very intensive. It was designed to update peer evaluators on the changes in revised ILAC A series documents IAF/ILAC A1 and IAF/ILAC A2, and on the ongoing revisions of IAF/ILAC A3 and ISO/IEC 17011. The workshop also went through ILAC A5 and A6, and the newly published AFRAC peer evaluators guide AFRAC GD 002. The workshop was also an opportunity for exchange of experience and to prepare for the upcoming witnessing of AFRAC evaluations for international recognition of the region. A number of recommendations were made from the training workshop and considered by the MRA Committee at its meeting held on 4 May 2017.
Participants were presented with certificates at the end of the training course. One of the participants, Ms. Helen Morokane, thanked the Facilitator on behalf of the participants for his time spent making preparations for the training workshop and conducting it in such a way as to stimulate active participation from all the evaluators.
AFRAC is a cooperation of accreditation bodies, sub-regional accreditation co-operations and stakeholders whose objective is to facilitate trade and contribute to the protection of health, safety and the environment within Africa. AFRAC has established a Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) and the Secretariat was evaluated from 6 to 8 February 2017 as the 1st step in the region’s evaluation. The AFRAC Secretariat is in the process of addressing the findings raised in this 1st step, some of which have already been cleared. Three witnessing opportunities have been identified and witnessing of the evaluations will be undertaken between July and November 2017.
Many thanks to Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt (PTB) Germany who sponsored the training by generously providing air travel, accommodation (full board) for all the peer evaluators/trainee evaluators, as well as the conference package.
Participants pose for a photo after the workshop