The solid partnership that ACCORD continues to share with the African Union (AU) recently flourished at the Fifth Annual High-Level Retreat of Special Envoys and Mediators on the Promotion of Peace Security and Stability in Africa. Themed 'Silencing the Guns – Owning the Future,' the Retreat was held in the Tanzanian city of Arusha from 21-23 October 2014. The Retreat was organised by the AU and hosted by the government of the United Republic of Tanzania. ACCORD and the Institute for Security Studies (ISS) provided technical support to the event.
The African Union (AU) Commission is currently finalising the work conducted with the Regional Economic Committees (RECs) and Regional Mechanisms (RMs) on the establishment of the AU Civilian Standby Roster. This roster is to serve as the integrated continental platform for the generation, retention and utilization of civilian capacities on a standby basis for deployment across a range of peace and security operations, including mediation missions, peace support operations, and post-conflict reconstruction and development undertakings. In the near future, the AU civilian roster database will be tested and opened to the RECs and RMs for usage, through the regional roster focal points. To date, four regions are staffed with roster focal points, with the exception of the Northern African Regional Capability (NARC). As a result, the AU is supporting NARC to develop its civilian component in order to correspond with this schedule.
Sexual exploitation and sexual abuse (SEA) are fundamental violations of humanitarian and protection principles of civilians during armed conflict. While any violations or abuses of power are the responsibility of the individual, the deploying entity also has a responsibility to ensure that effective mechanisms are in place to prevent and address misconduct on the part of its personnel. As a result, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) in close partnership with the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD), coordinated a Leadership Capacity Building Workshop on Sexual Exploitation and Abuse. ACCORD continues to be an engaged civil society organisation working in conflict management across the continent, as demonstrated over the last two decades.
The Training for Peace (TfP) programme at ACCORD participated in the Integrated Mission Planning and Mission Support (IMP & MS) Training Harmonization and Standardization Workshop from 29 September to 03 October 2014 at the SADC RPTC in Harare, Zimbabwe. The workshop, which was organized by the African Peace Support Trainers Association (APSTA) Secretariat, brought together about 30 Mission Planning and Mission Support Experts drawn from institutions such as the African Union Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD), Regional Economic Communities/Mechanisms (RECs/RMs), African Union Mission In Somalia (AMISOM), ACCORD, International Peace Support Training Centre (IPSTC), institute of security studies (ISS), Kofi Anan International Peacekeeping Training Center (KAIPTC), LECIAD, NDC Nigeria, SADC RPTC, UN DPKO, UNOAU, and the APSTA Secretariat.
In line with its objective of providing training in the skills of negotiation, conflict prevention, resolution and management, ACCORD - in partnership with the African Union (AU) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) - has organised a capacity building workshop for senior staff of Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs) from the COMESA region. Participants from the COMESA Secretariat as well as the AU Commission Secretariat also attended.
The latest publication by the African Centre for Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) articulates information and ideas generated from the proceedings of the Fourth African Union (AU) High-Level Retreat on the Promotion of Peace, Security and Stability in Africa, which was held in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, on 29 and 30 October 2013 under the theme '50 Years of peacemaking in Africa: A critical retrospective of OAU/AU peacemaking'.
The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) have participated in an Integrated Gender and SGBV Course for Police Advisors in Peace Missions. The course seeks to build the foundational knowledge, skills and personal qualities of participants to more effectively support the women, peace and security mandate of United Nations (UN) and African Union (AU) peacekeeping missions; as part of their daily duties and responsibilities in peacekeeping operations, considering the rule of law (ROL), UN and international standards and best practices regarding gender equality, human rights, and SGBV prevention and response. The experience TfP/ACCORD gained from this high level training will strengthens the capacity of its Peacekeeping Unit to disseminate and deliver trainings on Gender and SGBV in the context of peacekeeping. This course is part of a broader process to support the Southern African Regional Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (SARPCCO), Eastern Africa Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (EAPCCO), UN Peace Missions in Africa, and AU's efforts at developing capacity for gender training.
The Training for Peace (TfP) Programme at ACCORD has participated in an African Union Commission (AUC) – Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) joint consultative meeting on cooperation on human rights in peace operations. The purpose of the joint consultative meeting was to exchange ideas on common areas of engagement and develop a framework of cooperation with concrete proposals on how the OHCHR and AU will relate on human rights issues in peace operations.
The Training for Peace Programme at ACCORD (TfP/ACCORD) has collaborated with AU Peace Support Operations Division (PSOD) in undertaking a study focusing on the roles of the civilian component in the African-led International Support Mission in the Central African Republic (MISCA) and in the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). The study is part of a larger research that seeks to analyse all the AU peace support operations (PSOs) in Africa in this context.
The African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) and the African Union (AU) collaborated to produce the AU Mediation Support Handbook. The recently published handbook is a general reference and field study guide for mediation teams and lead mediators deployed on AU mediation missions. With mediation in Africa having moved from an ad hoc intervention to a more institutionalised approach, there is a need for further training, information gathering and dissemination, as well as strategy guidance, as covered in the handbook.
ACCORD has contributed to the Inaugural Meeting of the Panel of the Wise (PW) by leading an interactive session on conflict trends in Africa. The Meeting, which took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 16-17 September, was organised by the African Union Commission (AUC) and brought together the Incoming and Outgoing Members of the PW, representatives from the United Nations Office to the African Union (UNOAU) as well as peacemaking experts and scholars.
- ACCORD participates in dialogue on role of parliamentarians in managing migration for development
- ACCORD’s Jannie Malan participates in inter-religious dialogue on the way to peace
- ACCORD's Training Unit collaborates with IGAD to train women mediators from Sudan and South Sudan
- ACCORD trains Burundi youth leaders in election dispute management
- ACCORD participates in UNDP experts consultation to critically review reconciliation as a mechanism for conflict prevention and peacebuilding
- ACCORD at validation workshop on Draft African Transitional Justice Policy Framework
- TfP/ACCORD participates in TfP field research on policing in peace operations in Africa, focussing on UNAMID
- Training of Trainers in International Humanitarian Law for Somali National Army Officers
- ACCORD publishes brief on Common African Position on the Post-2015 Development Agenda ahead of UN General Assembly meetings
- ACCORD trains SADC military, police and civilians in mediation, negotiation and gender in peace support operations
- ACCORD receives the Mahatma Gandhi International Award for Reconciliation and Peace
- ACCORD partners with UN Peacebuilding Fund for workshop on Political Nature of Peacebuilding
- ACCORD conducts Electoral Alternate Dispute Resolution workshop with the Electoral Commissioners Forum (ECF) of SADC
- ACCORD Celebrates Nelson Mandela Day by contributing to Abalindi Welfare Society
- TfP/ACCORD train UNMISS civil affairs officers on conflict analysis and reporting
- TfP/ACCORD serve as panelists at peace operations workshop in Malawi
- ACCORD co-hosts 4th International Africa Peace and Conflict Resolution conference in partnership with the Centre for African Peace and Conflict Resolution
- ACCORD facilitates key COMESA forum meetings in Seychelles
- ACCORD/TFP take part in 20th IAPTC annual conference and host training methodologies bilateral meeting
- ACCORD participate in Peace Capacities Network 2014 annual meeting in Istanbul