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Research Report

Leveraging Local Knowledge for Peacebuilding and Statebuilding in Africa

Copyright Date: Mar. 1, 2015
Pages: 68

Table of Contents

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  1. (pp. None)
  2. (pp. i-ii)
  3. (pp. iii-iv)
  4. (pp. 1-4)
    Andrea Ó Súilleabháin

    Over the past two decades, the concepts of peacebuilding and statebuilding have emerged in tandem with extensive institutional developments related to peace and security. Many of these institutions, interventions, and programs have focused on peacebuilding and statebuilding in Africa. Nine of the United Nations’ sixteen peacekeeping missions are deployed in Africa.¹ All six countries placed on the agenda of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission since its founding in 2005 are in Africa, alongside UN regional peacebuilding offices for West Africa, Central Africa, and the Great Lakes region.² Other major international stake - holders maintain ongoing peacebuilding and statebuilding efforts in...

  5. (pp. 5-14)
    Yasmin M. Khodary

    The Middle East has witnessed a wave of political demonstrations in recent years, resulting in the overthrow of authoritarian regimes. In Egypt, shoulder-to-shoulder with men, women were present in the revolution that began on January 25, 2011, in Tahrir Square and across the country— many times at the forefront of street protests and demonstrations. They chose not to campaign for their rights as women but to align with the national goals and slogans of the revolution: social justice, equality, and freedom.¹ At the same time, Egyptian women learned from their mistakes in previous revolutions and were determined not to allow...

  6. (pp. 15-23)
    Nestor Nkurunziza

    Youth are an essential constituency in all phases of peacebuilding. In most conflict situations, young people are both perpetrators and victims of violence and conflict. In postconflict societies, they often represent the majority of the population. As future leaders, young people play a significant role in the viability of peacebuilding and statebuilding programs.¹ Yet during peace negotiations, young people can act as dissidents under the manipulation of political actors, and, throughout the peacebuilding process, they can be instrumentalized to benefit the interests of political groups.² At the same time, young people are acutely affected by the structural issues that undermine...

  7. (pp. 24-31)
    Frank Okyere

    Countries in the Sahel region are among the poorest in Africa, sitting at the periphery of the development spectrum, and at the heart of an expanse that is confronted by a complex web of state fragility, internal conflicts, and humanitarian, governance, and security challenges, including cross-border crime, increased threats of terrorism, and all forms of illicit activities.¹ Instability in the Sahel has culminated in multiple security challenges for several states in the region. Coupled with easy availability of weapons emanating from the crisis in Libya, these complexities have deepened “unholy alliances” in the Sahel region, which have created an enabling...

  8. (pp. 32-41)
    Webster Zambara

    In February 2009, a coalition government was inaugurated in Zimbabwe, which stabilized the country after a decade of political crisis and sharp economic decline. The government was formed following the signing of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) in September 2008 by the ruling party, the Zimbabwe African National Union - Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF), and two factions of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) opposition party.¹ Article VII of the GPA led to the creation of the Organ for National Healing, Reconciliation, and Integration (ONHRI),² commonly referred to as “the Organ,” to spearhead peacebuilding efforts in a country that had witnessed...

  9. (pp. 42-49)
    Grace Maina

    Kenyan political life has long been characterized by factors that undermine democracy and development: income inequalities, land grievances, weak government institutions, and poor ethnic relations. Meanwhile, Kenya has experienced outbreaks of violence that can be categorized as intrastate conflicts.¹ Elections have often been the space in which grievances have been expressed and ethnicity manipulated as politicians play one ethnic community against another to expand and protect their political space.² The winner-takes-all nature of democracy in Kenya has continued to challenge a country coping with ethnic divisions. Questions of vote manipulation and electoral fraud have dominated the electoral dialogue. The ruling...

  10. (pp. 50-57)
    Andrea Ó Súilleabháin

    The frequent invocation of terms like “national ownership,” “local ownership,” and “inclusivity” in key peacebuilding and statebuilding policies and statements by the leadership of the United Nations (UN) and other international organizations points to a growing consensus on the importance of locally focused approaches. Translating these principles into practice—in terms of peacebuilding mechanisms, statebuilding processes, and programs on the ground—is an enduring challenge for international organizations and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).

    The nature of conflict settings today, the repetition of violence, and the frequency of relapse in most conflict-affected states require new strategies and approaches from actors seeking to...

  11. (pp. 62-62)