From 09 – 11 November 2015, the African Union’s Defence and Security Division in collaboration with the African Security Sector Network (ASSN) held a validation workshop for the technical tools produced for the operationalization of the AU Policy Framework on Security Sector Reform (AUPFSSR).
The African Union Commission (AUC) developed the AUPFSSR with technical support from the African Security Sector Network (ASSN), acting on a mandate from the Assembly of AU Heads of State and Governments in January 2008, who encouraged the AUC to develop a comprehensive policy framework on SSR. Developed in a highly consultative process that culminated in its endorsement by AU Heads of State and Government at the 20th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the AU Summit in January 2013, the AUPFSSR is the continental framework for SSR which highlights principles, areas and conditions within which the AU can provide SSR assistance to Member States.
Following the formal endorsement of the AUPFSSR, the ASSN was commissioned in 2013 by the AUC and its SSR partners within the framework of the project “Building African Union Capacities in Security Sector Reform: A joint United Nations/European Union Support Action”, to facilitate the development of 7 technical tools meant for its operationalization. The tools developed so far are the following:
- AU Guidance on developing National Codes of Conduct for African Security Institutions;
- Handbook on SSR Lessons Learned and Good Practices;
- Operational Guidance Notes on Harmonization of National Security Legislation;
- Operational Guidance Notes on SSR Needs Assessments Missions;
- Operational Guidance Notes on Gender and SSR;
- Manual on SSR Training;
- SSR Monitoring and Evaluation Template
Presented for discussion by various groups of experts in two consultation workshops organized by the AU and ASSN in Addis Ababa in November 2013 and November 2014, the main purpose of these technical tools is to be used by the AUC in provision of SSR support to Member States and may also be used by Member States and Regional Economic Communities (RECs) in guiding their own SSR initiatives.
The objective of this validation workshop was to review these 7 technical tools developed and discussed in 2013 and 2014 and to recommend them for use in the field by the AUC, RECs and relevant bodies who intend to implement SSR on the continent.
About 40 experts from AUC relevant departments, divisions, units and AU Liaison Offices (AULO), representatives from RECs, representatives from Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), media, think tanks and ASSN will participate in the validation workshop.
Participants to the workshop are expected to:
- review, provide final inputs/comments and validate the 7 technical tools
- recommend the use of the developed tools by the AU; and
- advise the African Union Commission on other possible missing tools (if any) to be developed as to complement the existing tools.