Issue No: 01/2023

Conflict & Resilience Monitor – 24 February 2023

The Conflict and Resilience Monitor offers monthly blog-size commentary and analysis on the latest conflict-related trends in Africa.

Photo: U.S. Army Africa

We begin the first Monitor of 2023 with an article from Cedric de Coning, Research Professor at NUPI, Rui Saraiva a research fellow in the peacebuilding and humanitarian support team and Ako Muto, an executive senior research fellow both from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Ogata Sadako Research Institute for Peace and Development.  The three authors write about adaptive peacebuilding, using case studies from Colombia and Mozambique.

We then head to West Africa for our next two pieces.  Mariana Llorens Zabala has written an article on the effectiveness of the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).  The article looks at the objectives of the MNJTF, African Union support to the MNJTF and gives an overall assessment of the effectiveness of the task force. Staying with West Africa, Joshua O. Bolarinwa writes about the elections in Nigeria and the context under which the election is taking place.

Moving to Southern Africa, Katharine Bebington, a programme officer at ACCORD writes about Eswatini.  In her article she writes about the recent murder of human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko and the upcoming elections in the Kingdom.

Chief Editor: Conflict & Resilience Monitor​
Managing Editor: Conflict & Resilience Monitor
Assistant Editor: Conflict & Resilience Monitor​
Photo: U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Kassidy Snyder

Investing in People and Enhancing Resilience for Sustaining Peace with Adaptive Peacebuilding

  • Cedric de Coning
  • Rui Saraiva
  • Ako Muto

One of the key issues Japan highlighted during its presidency of the United Nations (UN) Security Council in January 2023 is the revitalizing and strengthening of UN efforts to sustain peace. After years of decline, conflict-related civilian deaths have increased sharply, and there are questions as to how the UN can better help prevent and manage conflict in a complex and volatile peace and security environment that is starkly different from when the UN was founded in 1945. Armed conflicts have become more violent, recur more frequently, and have become more complex to prevent or resolve. In Syria alone, the UN Human Rights office estimate that more than 306,000 civilians have lost their lives due to violent conflict over the last 10 years. Other conflicts that have caused the most deaths in recent years include Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Somalia, Yemen, and, since 2022, the war in Ukraine.

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Photo: U.S. Army Africa
Peace and Security

Assessing the Effectiveness of the Multinational Joint Task Force

  • Mariana Llorens Zabala

The Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) was re-activated in late 2014 by the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) as a regional security arrangement to fight the spreading threat of Boko Haram (BH) in the region. The African Union (AU) Peace and Security Council (PSC) authorised the operationalisation of the Force´s mandate in early 2015 and has renewed its mandate on a yearly basis since then. The Force is comprised of troops from its five Troop Contributing Countries (TCCs), namely Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Cameroon and a smaller contingent from Benin, and it is tasked with three core mandated tasks.

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Photo: Commonwealth Secretariat

Crossroads: The Significance and Prospects of Nigeria’s 2023 Presidential Election

  • Joshua Olusegun Bolarinwa

There comes a time when a society and its people must decide whether it should seek to continue the status quo or challenge it and Africa’s past and recent history is proof. While democratic elections are drivers of such times and purposed to be non-violent, African societies are riddled with certain complexities and impeding factors tend to drive these societies towards violence. Hence, Africa’s most populous country, Nigeria, will be at such a time on 25 February 2023, when it holds its Presidential and National Assembly Elections; and the 7th in the Fourth Republic (1999-2023).

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Photo: GCIS

Eswatini: the year ahead

  • Katharine Bebington

Eswatini started 2023 at the forefront of the world’s attention following the death of human rights lawyer Thulani Maseko. His death saw the world turn their gaze on the current situation in Eswatini, in a conflict that has not captured attention outside of the Southern African region. The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has continued to be grapple with the situation, but their interventions have not progressed. Aside from the attention that the Kingdom received following Maseko’s death, Eswatini is set to host elections in 2023, which is an event that is sure to change the current balance of forces in the country.

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