ACCORD, in collaboration with the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Mediation Support Unit undertook a series of consultations with member states to conduct consultations to assess the capacities of mediation and peacebuilding architectures at the national level. The consultations took place in Kenya, Sudan and South Sudan during the course of November 2019.
The consultative workshops on building mediation and conflict prevention capacities of the respective countries provided a platform for relevant national institutions to engage in dialogue, and assess institutions’ capacities to address post-conflict situations as well as mitigate recurring conflicts. It therefore engaged in discussions to identify the gaps in the scope, mandate, policies and responsibilities of national institutions. Moreover, the consultative workshop provided an opportunity for the national institutions to identify missing links and establish mechanisms for streamlining inter-linkages and synergies.
The consultations were held following a study on the Assessment of Conflict Prevention Architectures of IGAD Member States. The study highlighted the lack of coordinated peace apparatuses at the national level. To this end, IGAD MSU and ACCORD held a consultative workshop, convening national institutions such as ministries, CSOs, Peace Commissions, academic institutions, together with peace and research centres with the aim of identifying the capacities of these institutions to engage in conflict prevention.
The level of institutionalisation of these capacities varied amongst the three countries, where Kenya has more established institutions in response to peacebuilding and mediation; whilst South Sudan is yet to establish institutions and frameworks that guide, support and coordinate mediation efforts at the national level. Sudan is in a period of transition. The key outcome of the consultations was recommendations put forth to IGAD MSU. These recommendations will guide IGAD MSU to provide the needed support to its member states, to strengthen these capacities.
Building the local and national capacities of peace infrastructures is a strategic pillar of ACCORD’s work and thus the organisation will collaborate further with IGAD MSU in support of these efforts.