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Addis Ababa, 21 October 2016 The African Union Commission (AUC) conducted a workshop entitled Ten Years of AU Post-Conflict Reconstruction and Development Policy (PCRD) Implementation: A reflection on progress, opportunities and challenges. The workshop, held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 19-21 October 2016, was an opportunity for the AUC to commemorate, together with its partners, the tenth year of the establishment of the PCRD Policy. It convened organisations devoted to the advancement of PCRD, to jointly reflect on what has been achieved and what remains to be done. Those included participants and high-level representatives from AU Commission - including the various Directorates at the Commission; Heads of the AU Liaison Offices (AULOs), representatives of Regional Economic Communities (RECs), Civil Society Organisations, Think Tanks, the United Nations, and Academia. 

“Consolidating peace and averting relapse into conflicts through comprehensive, inclusive and nationally owned processes is critical. Post-conflict reconstruction and development (PCRD) are long-term processes that are aimed at creating the conditions for sustaining peace, based on key principles and values.” This statement by the by H.E. Ambassador Smail Chergui, Commissioner for Peace and Security at the AUC, set the tone of the workshop. 

“PCRD is not a technical process, it is a political process. If we are to realize Agenda 2063, we have to ensure we prioritise management of conflict and transition”, said Dr Alhaji Sarjoh Bah, Head of AU   Crisis Management and PCRD. 

The workshop discussed a wide range of issues with regards to AU PCRD implementation. It highlighted the importance of AU PCRD and provided several recommendations for its strengthening. In particular, participants called for a stronger integration of PCRD into broader peace and security responses, ensuring that impact is measured and contributing to longer-term impact. Key findings related to the need for the six pillars of the AU PCRD policy framework, including security; political governance and transitions; humanitarian assistance; socio-economic reconstruction and development; human rights, justice and reconciliation; and women and youth. A particular focus was also given to the role of partnerships. 

 

The workshop was a critical development for the AU, not only to reflect on its achievements in the past ten years, but also to gather with its partners to discuss and agree upon approaches towards accelerated implementation of the PCRD Policy Framework. The sessions were divided within particular pillars of the AU PCRD policy framework and through a critical joint reflection that aimed at enhancing understanding amongst participants on examples of practical PCRD measures and responses.  

The meeting also identified emerging challenges and threats that AU PCRD processes face, particularly through analysis of the evolving role of African CSOs, academia engaged in African peacebuilding and PCRD processes. This meeting is expected to contribute to the ongoing strengthening of AU PCRD framework, and ensure increased buy-in from stakeholders in supporting effective PCRD and peacebuilding responses. 

In his closing remarks, Dr. Bah called on the AUC to endeavour to build synergies to ensure the Commission delivers as one and encouraged partners to deepen their engagement with the Commission on this important dossier.

Posted by Kodjo Tchioffo

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