Photo Credit: nairnbairn

Issue No: 35/2020

COVID-19 Conflict & Resilience Monitor – 18 December 2020

During the COVID-19 crisis ACCORD's analysis will be focused on the impact of the pandemic on conflict and resilience in Africa.

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ACCORD COVID-19 Conflict & Resilience Monitor
References: AfricaCDC, ACLED and African Arguments

Our last issue of the Monitor for 2020 focuses on the socio-economic impact of COVID-19, with a feature piece by the secretary-general of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), H.E Wamkele Keabetswe Mene, who argues that the AfCFTA will be one of Africa’s post-COVID-19 recovery tools. 

We also feature the executive director of the World Food Programme (WFP), Dr David Beasley, who calls for more action as the toxic combination of conflict, climate change and COVID-19 threatens to push millions of people to the brink of starvation. 

Nadira Bayat and Dr David Luke from the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) argue that the implementation of the AfCFTA should be regarded as another avenue to further the agenda to drive women’s economic empowerment. The edition ends with an article by Owen Mangiza and Dr Joshua Chakawa on the socio-economic effect of COVID-19, and the coping mechanisms of people in cross-border communities in Chipinge, Zimbabwe. 

Managing Editor: COVID-19 Conflict & Resilience Monitor
Chief Editor: COVID-19 Conflict & Resilience Monitor​
Paul Kagame Flickr
Paul Kagame Flickr
Features, Livelihood Insecurity & Economic Impact

Enhancing intra-African trade in times of the COVID-19 pandemic

  • Wamkele Keabetswe Mene

Since the negotiations for the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) were launched in Johannesburg in 2015, remarkable progress has been achieved – largely because of the political will and commitment of the Assembly of Heads of States and Government of the African Union (AU) to ensure that Africa takes concrete steps towards the creation of an integrated market. 

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Albert Gonzalez Farran, UNAMID
Albert Gonzalez Farran, UNAMID
Features, Livelihood Insecurity & Economic Impact

The economic impact of coronavirus pushes millions further into hunger

  • David Beasley

A few months ago, I warned the United Nations Security Council that the world stood on the brink of a hunger pandemic. A toxic combination of conflict, climate change and COVID-19 had threatened to push 270 million people to the brink of starvation. Famine was real. It was a terrifying possibility in up to three dozen countries if we did not continue to act like we had been acting. Fortunately, since then, the world really listened. Donors and leaders all over the world responded; they acted. Countries large and small took extraordinary measures to save the lives of their citizens and support their economies, spending US$17 trillion on fiscal stimulus and central bank support. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the G20 nations threw a lifeline to the poorest nations by suspending debt repayments. That made a huge impact. With our donors’ help, the global humanitarian community launched a huge and unprecedented global fightback against the coronavirus.

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Jennifer A. Patterson / ILO
Jennifer A. Patterson / ILO

The dawn of 2020 heralded an auspicious beginning for four defining initiatives with particular significance for Africa: the historic agreement establishing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA); the African Union (AU) theme on Silencing the Guns 2020: Creating conducive conditions for Africa’s development; and two notable anniversaries related to women, peace and security (WPS). These were the 25th anniversary of the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, and the 20th anniversary of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 1325 (2000). It is worth recalling that the WPS agenda was established by UNSC Resolution 1325 and seeks to empower women in efforts aimed at preventing and ending conflict, and building and sustaining peace. Unfolding against this backdrop was one of the greatest threats to global health. 

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World Bank / Sambrian Mbaabu
World Bank / Sambrian Mbaabu
Cross-border / Inter-State tensions

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on border communities: the case of Chipinge, Zimbabwe

  • Owen Mangiza
  • Joshua Chakawa

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on border communities in the Chipinge district in south-east Zimbabwe, which shares borders with Mozambique and South Africa. The borders are the lifeline of the Chipinge communities, and the efforts of the three governments to regulate the movement of people from either side of the borders, to prevent the spread of COVID-19, have negatively affected the economic and social interactions of the border communities. One unfortunate side-effect is that these measures have increased the space for illicit trade and organised crime along the borders as people try to earn a living and interact, in spite of the COVID-19 restrictions.

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