Exploring Opportunities for Engaging With African Union Mechanisms

Terça-feira, Julho 11th. 2017
African Union


This brown bag explores opportunities for CSO engagement with AU treaty mechanisms, either in playing an oversight role to ensure implementation, or a complimentary role in supporting  processes through advocacy, engagement and/or other programmatic work within the Southern Africa region.  The session will explore the following thematic focus areas with key presenters leading the discussions:

African Peer Review Mechanisms (APRM): Steven Gruzd is the Head of Governance and African Peer Review Mechanism Programme at the SA Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) and has published extensively on related subjects.

The APRM was established in 2003 by the New Partnership (NEPAD) for African Heads of State and Government Implementation Committee, (HSGIC) to monitor governance performance amongst Member States. The APRM is a self-monitoring instrument of the AU and its membership is voluntary. In January 2017, President Dr Hage Geingob signed the accession Memorandum of Understanding of the Africa Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) and became the 36th AU member state to join the primary governance mechanism in Africa. What opportunities exist for CSO engagement in the APRM process, which is primarily meant to be a systematic consultative exercise aimed at placing people at the centre of decision making, with the aim of them being governed well? 

African Union Advisory Board on Corruption (AUABC) AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC)  Hon. Daniel Batidam, Chairperson of the Board, AU Advisory Board on Corruption (AUABC)

2018 has been declared the Year of Combating Corruption in Africa by the AU.  This decision is far reaching, and presents many opportunities for CSOs to engage with the theme to ensure for example that: the AU Advisory Board on Corruption (AUABC) has a stronger mandate; or that the process of state selection of board members is more transparent; or that the AU Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption (AUCPCC) is effectively implemented by the 37 countries that have ratified the convention; furthermore the questionnaire could be redesigned to be a more effective tool to monitor state implementation- it could also be used to elevate the importance of IFFs and extractives at continental level.  What opportunities exist for civil society to engage in a robust manner and take control of the agenda given that Africa is bleeding funds through corruption?

Civil Society Perspectives on African Union Member State Commitments to Democratic Governance

Prof. Anne Mc Lennan, Associate Professor, Wits School of Governance (WSG) & Grant Masterson, Senior Programme Officer,  Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA)

Wits School of Gov, AfRO and Oxfam jointly launched the above study on 30 June 2017 in Addis, on the margins of the 29th AU Summit.  This report was done to trigger state reporting particularly at the AGA Platform/secretariat level. Six countries- Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa and Zambia- were subjected to the first round of a systematic audit by civil society organizations in these countries engaged in issues of transparency and accountability, democracy building and promotion of good governance.   The study measured how countries faired in the following areas: constitutionalism and the rule of law; democratic culture and political pluralism; strong democratic institutions; regular democratic elections; popular participation; socio-economic justice, service delivery and combatting corruption.  The criteria for the selection was hinged on the need for each country to have acceded to the APRM and undergone a review.  Each country also had to have ratified the African Charter on Democracy Elections and Governance as well as the AU Convention on Preventing and Combatting Corruption.  Perspectives from the Southern Africa region will be discussed.

DATE: 13 JULY 2017

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