OVERVIEW OF PEACE AND SECURITY IN WEST AFRICA- JULY TO SEPTEMBER 2020
The global spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the socio-economic and political landscape of West Africa cannot be underestimated. Since the outbreak of this pandemic, the impact on human life, food systems and public health have been devastating. The containment measures instituted by national governments stifled economic activity both in the formal and informal sectors further exacerbating existing inequalities. As the COVID-19 continues to spread in West Africa, there are concerns over potential negative effects of the pandemic on national elections, public safety and security, economic activities and livelihoods in the coming days.
Democracy and Governance:
In recent months, the political governance space in West Africa has been fraught with a myriad of challenges, signalling potential threats to stability particularly in the run up to elections. The coup d’état in Mali which occurred on August 18, 2020 following a series of protests in the country culminated in the overthrow of President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita. For a country already grappling with violent extremism and ethnic violence, the truncation of democratic governance in Mali has the potential to set back efforts to engender social cohesion and stability. The situation also has far-reaching implications for peace and security in West Africa and the Sahel region. Furthermore, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea and Niger have commenced electoral processes in the lead up to parliamentary and presidential elections between October and December 2020, with signs of potential threats to the peaceful conduct of the elections.
Organized Crime and Violent extremism:
The West Africa region continues to witness triple effects of terrorism, organised crimes and its attendant humanitarian crisis and security challenges especially in countries such as Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and Nigeria. Persistent terrorist attacks and other armed violence have heightened insecurity and vulnerability in communities across the Sahel countries. In addition, kidnapping, human and drug trafficking, and proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) also continue to fuel insecurity in the region. The humanitarian situation in the affected countries continue to worsen with the increase in internally displaced persons (IDPs), refugee and migrant flows across Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Nigeria.
Women, Peace and Security:
In the quarter under review, there were notable challenges in the area of women, peace and security. The COVID-19 and its disproportionate socio-economic impacts on women and girls in West Africa was evident. Even before COVID-19, women, who often work in the informal sector reported limitations in participation, productivity and income. The advent of the pandemic has resulted in female businesses plummeting, pay and job cuts and other attendant hardships. In addition, women and girls continue to experience physical violence and targeted killings across the region. For instance, in Ghana, a 25-year-old woman was murdered, and some body parts
removed at Gomoa Lome in the Central Region. Also, in Adjei Kojo Suncity in the Tema West Municipality, a 10-year-old girl was killed in her home with body parts removed. In Guinea, a man in his thirties is reported to have murdered his pregnant wife for ritual purposes. The incident occurred on September 17, 2020 at Baniré district located in the Boké prefecture. In the area of women’s health and safety, in The Gambia, maternal mortality has been identified as one of the main issues of concern. According to reports, 60% of the deaths occurring during delivery is as a result of Postpartum haemorrhage.
The environmental security landscape in the quarter under review has been dominated by reports of spiraling spread of COVID-19, floods as well as land disputes in the region. Aside the challenges occasioned by COVID-19, almost all the countries in the region also had to contend with prolonged periods of rainfall resulting in floods and in some cases displacements. Notable flooding incidents recorded in the region include those that occurred in Niger, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and Guinea. In Niger, 45 people were reported dead with 226,000 people displaced and many other properties including 25,800 homes, farmlands and crops destroyed. In Nigeria, many states including Jigawa, Kano, Kebbi, Sokoto were hit by flooding. As of September 10, 2020, property damage related to flooding and high winds in Burkina Faso was estimated at 3,347 houses destroyed, 1,656 homes damaged and 1,790 IDP emergency shelters destroyed or damaged. More than 250 tons of food were reported to have been destroyed or washed away. There are also significant losses of animals (cattle, sheep, goats, asses, poultry). The human toll is estimated at 13 deaths and 50 injured. An estimated 563 people were reportedly rendered homeless.
REGIONAL AND NATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS IN QUARTER THREE
1.0 ENHANCING AND SUSTAINING ELECTORAL SUPPORT THROUGH NEWS
1.1. Election Monitoring, Analysis and Mitigation (EMAM)
In the quarter, the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) continued to strengthen regional and national capacities in Early Warning and Early Response to enhance peaceful electoral processes in West Africa under the three-year EU funded Election Monitoring, Analysis and Mitigation (EMAM) Project. This project further complements efforts of ECOWAS, African Union (AU) and the United Nations Office for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS) in ensuring free, fair and credible elections. In the period under review, the underlisted activities were undertaken.
1.1.1. Launch of EMAM in Niger
On September 24, 2020, the official launch of the EMAM project was held in Niger. In attendance at the launch was the Minister of Interior, Public Security, Decentralisation, Customary and Religious Affairs who served as Chair and several WANEP-Niger Network Member Organisations. WANEP-Niger presented the EMAM project and its objectives with attendees.
1.1.2. Launch of National and Regional Response Groups:
National Election Response Groups (NERG) were launched in Ghana and Benin. On September 25, 2020, WANEP and the National Peace Council (NPC) launched the National Election Response Group (NERG), a key component of the EMAM project. The NERG is composed of representatives of various institutions including WANEP, NPC, Electoral Commission of Ghana (EC), Ministry of Interior, Ghana Police Service, Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and Star-Ghana. The launch of the NERG in Benin also took place on September 25, 2020. The NERG is expected to serve as a response platform set up to discuss, develop and recommend response strategies to violent threats pre, during and post elections. The decisions of the NERG will be supported with analysis and reports from WANEP’s National Early Warning System (NEWS).
In the quarter under review, the Regional Election Response Groups (RERG) were also inaugurated in Ghana. The northern belt Regional Election Response Group (RERG) which was launched on 28th September in Tamale serves as focal point for the northern cluster made up of
Group photo: Launch of the National Election Response Group (NERG) at the Best Western Premier Hotel, Accra-Ghana
Northern, North-East, Upper East, Upper West and Savannah regions).
Similarly, the Kumasi RERG of the middle belt cluster (Ashanti, Bono, Bono-East, Ahafo, Western, and Western-North regions) was launched on 30th September 2020. The expectations from the groups were established through a presentation of an overview of EMAM, hotspot mapping, and their terms of reference. The purpose of the RERG is to complement electoral violence mitigation efforts of the NERG at the regional level.
1.1.3. Capacity Building on Electoral Dispute Management
WANEP organised capacity building workshop for representatives of NGOs/CSOs Experts Cluster in Ghana on Electoral Dispute Management (EDM) ahead of the December 2020 elections. The training was geared towards enhancing efforts to mitigate electoral violence.
1.1.4. Validation of Indicators, Stakeholder and Hotspot Mapping:
Three two-day Experts Cluster Consolidation and Validation of Indicators workshops were held in Ghana, Benin and Niger. In Ghana, the two-day Experts Cluster Consultation and Validation of Indicators was held from July 28 to 29, 2020. An estimated 25 stakeholders participated in the meeting including representatives of National Peace Council, KAIPTC, Legon Centre for International Affairs and Diplomacy, Ministry of Interior and relevant civil society organisations from the 16 regions of Ghana. In Niger, the activity took place in Niamey from July 13 to 14, 2020 while the activity in Benin took place from September 9 to 10, 2020 in Cotonou. The key objectives of these meetings included the review and update (validation) of potential election hotspots in the country; review and update (validation) the list of indicators for monitoring the electoral process and; the establishment of the composition and structure of the National Elections Response Group (NERG). In Benin, the mapping has enabled the effective deployment of monitors to monitor potential risks of electoral violence.
1.1.5. Grant Management Training
WANEP organised Grant management trainings for CSOs/NGOs Experts Clusters in Ghana, Benin and Burkina Faso under the EMAM project. The aim of the training is to ensure that NGOS/CSOs subgrantees under the project adhere to international accepted standards of financial management.
1.1.6. Development and Launch of the “GhanaElects” Portal
In the period under review, WANEP developed and launched the “GhanaElects” Portal- a mechanism for reporting on election-related violence.
1.1.7. Training of Community Monitors
Under the Election Monitoring analysis and Mitigation (EMAM) project, a two – day training was conducted for fifty (50) selected Community Early Warning Monitors to be able to report on electoral violence. The training equipped the monitors on the newly designed electoral monitoring platform, GhanaElects, which is driving the collection and processing of data gathered from the constituencies by the monitors. Burkina Faso under the EMAM project also carried out a monitors training ahead of the elections.
1.1.8. Mitigating Electoral Violence Pre, During and Post Elections
In Guinea, two (2) NERG Monthly meetings within the framework of the EMAM project were organized. During these meetings, two (2) analytical reports on the socio-political situation of the as well as response initiatives were shared and discussed. Early warning information covering thematic areas such mining, environment, agriculture, crime and democracy were collated and reported by monitors in the seven (7) pilot communities in the Boké region to enhance the work of the NERG.
1.1.9. Training of Election Observers
In Guinea, a total of 310 observers were recruited for the monitoring of the October 18, 2020 presidential elections under the EMAM and “Contribuer à apaiser le climat socio-politique ” Projects. Another 76 supervisors of the Citizens’ Coalition for Elections and Governance (COCEG) were supported and trained in four (4) regions of Guinea. These persons are required to monitor and report electoral violence related incidents. COCEG also supported the recruitment of 750 citizen observers for the monitoring and observation of the presidential elections of October 18, 2020.
1.1. Strengthening of Early Warning Reporting and Response
1.1.1. Local/Community level early warning and response structures are established:
A key aspect of WANEP’s programming is to strengthen local/ community structures for early warning and response. To ensure sustainability and local ownership, periodic trainings or capacity building workshops are organised for community actors in partnership with existing structures. In the quarter under review, WANEP National Network Secretariats across West Africa engaged its community monitors and community actors on enhancing conflict prevention interventions.
WANEP-Burkina Faso: The process for monitoring the collaboration between the Security and Defence Agents and citizens of the six target communities has begun under the “Together for
Security” Project. 29 indicators were developed and sub-grouped in two for integration in the WANEP NEWS. 30 peace and security committee members were trained and sensitised on the collaborative mechanisms between Security and Defense Forces (SDF) and the community.
In recognition of its work in democracy and governance, WANEP-Burkina Faso’s expertise has been sought after to support the implementation of projects on elections, democracy and governance by various organisations. Some of these organisations include the UNDP which has partnered with WANEP in the development of consortium projects.
WANEP- Guinea: In Guinea, the National Network Secretariat (NSS) supported the implementation of Agence Nationale de Financement des Collectivés Locales – ANAFIC’s1 early warning and response system in seven (7) pilot communities in the Boké region. A major outcome of this intervention is the involvement of community members and the local conflict response group in the resolution of five (5) conflict cases.
WANEP-Niger: With financial support from Oxfam and the Danish Embassy in Niger, WANEP-Niger built the capacities of 22 WANEP Community monitors from the eight (8) regions of the country on Early Warning and Conflict Analysis as part of the “Peace by More Resilience” project. Out of 22 participants, 46.15% were young women. The training has equipped monitors with the knowledge and skills on early warning data collation, reporting and analysis. In addition, four (4) members of two (2) WANEP-Niger Network Member Organisations were also trained on Early Warning.
In addition, WANEP-Niger in August 20202 recruited 10 focal points (2 focal points per commune) to constitute a team of monitors for the strengthening of the early warning system as part of the project on Building trust and cooperation between the Defence and Security Forces and communities in the Liptako-Gourma region. This project includes the five (5) municipalities of the regions of Tillabéry (Téra-Gothèye-Ayorou-Bankilaré and Torodi)).
In the period under review, the NNS also held consultative workshop on the development and validation of complementary indicators for the collation of information in five (5) targeted municipalities in the Tillabéry region. This intervention was organised in partnership with Search for Common Ground (SFCG) and with financial support from the Royal Danish Embassy. 75 participants (15 participants per commune) participated in the consultative meeting, with 26.66% being women.
1 National Agency for Financing Local Authorities
WANEP-Nigeria: As a result of the continuous training of WANEP-Nigeria’s community monitors, there has been enhanced reporting by on the NEWS Portal. This has contributed to enhancement of WANEP’s Early Warning outputs and subsequently, the wide recognition of WANEP’s Early Warning products by media outfits as well as National and International partners.
Under the ‘Integrated Peacebuilding Approaches to Herder-Farmer Crisis project in Benue, Taraba and Nasarawa States’, WANEP-Nigeria following its presentation of the online Demo of the Early Warning and Early Response System was acknowledged by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and partners at State level in all target states.
WANEP-Senegal: in the quarter under review, the NNS organised a seminar on reversing the curve of insecurity in Senegal. The webinar provided an opportunity for one of the Comités Consultatifs Communautaires (CCC)2 representatives under the Community Oriented Policing Strategy (COPS) project to demonstrate the importance of inclusive security management using pilot drug control project of the municipality of Keur Massar as a case in point.
WANEP-Senegal organised three half-day capacity building activities targeted at young people at the ECO training Centre. The eco-citizen camp in Thiaroye is an activity that has the aim of training young people in the culture of green peace by facilitating the understanding of environmental preservation as a component of Early Warning as well as environmental degradation as a key problem in conflict management.
1.2.2. Production and Dissemination of Early Warning Outputs: Across West Africa and beyond, reports churned out of WANEP’S National Early Warning System (NEWS) continue to be harnessed for analysis, policy development and program implementation by various actors including intergovernmental agencies such as AU, ECOWAS and National Government. The outputs captured in the table below were and among key English and French products widely disseminated and utilized for advocacy and policy engagement;
2 Community Advisory Community
S/N Title of Publication Country / Region Number of Editions Produced Situational reports for electoral violence monitoring
Rapport de Situation sur le Suivi du Processus Électoral pour la Présidentielle Guinéenne de 2020
3 2. Rapport de Situation sur le Suivi du Processus Électoral pour la Présidentielle en Cote d’Ivoire Cote d’Ivoire 2
Rapport de Situation sur le Suivi du Processus Électoral pour la Présidentielle et législatives
1 NEWS Quick Updates
NEWS Quick Update: Over 1500 persons displaced after Dimia and Guabluga Dams Spillage and Torrential Rainfall
1 5. 14 Confirmed Dead and over 50 Injured in a Gory Accident at Kyekyewere in the Eastern Region Ghana 1
10 Dead, Several Rendered Homeless After Bagré Dam Spillage in the North Eastern Region
1 7. Des manifestations populaires ont conduit à la démission du président de la république du Mali Mali 1
NEWS Situation Tracking 8. 5ème rapport de suivi de la pandémie Covid-19 en Guinée Guinea 1
La dynamique politique en Côte d’Ivoire
1 10. 4eme rapport de suive de la Pandémie Corona virus (C0VID-19) en Guinée Guinée
Political Dynamics Leading into the 2020 general elections
1 NEWS Weekly Highlights
The Gambia: Weekly Highlights
12 13. Ghana: Weekly Highlights Ghana 12
Guinea: Weekly Highlights
12 15. Liberia: Weekly Highlights Liberia 12
Mali: Weekly Highlights
12 17. Niger: Weekly Highlights Niger 12
Senegal: Weekly highlights
19. Togo: Weekly highlights Togo 12
Nigeria: Weekly highlights
12 21. Benin: Weekly highlights: Benin 12
Cote d’Ivoire: weekly highlights:
12 23. Burkina Faso: Weekly highlights: Burkina Faso 12
Sierra Leone: Weekly highlights:
12 Special weekly highlight reports on the December 7 general elections in Ghana ( 13 weekly highlight reports)
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020
1 26. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020 The Gambia 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020
1 28. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Benin 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 30. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Benin 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020
1 32. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020 Burkina Faso 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020
1 34. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Cote d’Ivoire 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 36. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Cote d’Ivoire 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July l 2020
1 38. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020 Ghana 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020
1 40. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Guinea 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 42. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Guinea 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin:
0 44. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Liberia 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 46. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Mali 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 48. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Mali 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: April 2020
1 50. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: May 2020 Niger 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: June 2020
52. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Nigeria 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 54. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Nigeria 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020
1 56. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020 Togo 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020
1 58. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020 Togo 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: July 2020
1 60. NEWS Monthly Bulletin: August 2020 Sierra Leone 1
NEWS Monthly Bulletin: September 2020
1 Thematic Report
The Impact of COVID-19 pandemic on Women
1 63. Political Insecurity in West Africa: A Call for Democratic Stability and Peaceful Elections West Africa 1
WANEP- Ghana: Early Warning products and outputs emanating from WANEP’s NEWS were shared with all Regional Executive Secretaries of the Peace Council, ECOWAS and AU. The outputs were also shared with other stakeholders such as Government agencies, partners and network members to support programming and interventions.
1.2.3. Sensitisation and awareness creation on COVID-19: As part of its mandate, WANEP supports advocacy and sensitisation bordering on various aspects of human security. With the advent of COVID-19 and its attendant challenges ranging from public health to socio-economic issues, WANEP has and continues to support sensitization and awareness creation engagements for community members and groups on key containment practices. This is an addition to the production of various Early Warning outputs as well as physical items provided at local/community level.
WANEP Senegal: Under the Fredrick Hebert Foundation funded project on COVID-19 awareness, three Network Member Organisations of WANEP-Senegal (Enfance et Paix, Forum pour un Développement Durable Endogène-FODDE3 and Comité d’Appui et de Soutien au Développement Economique et Social des regions de Ziguinchor et de Kolda- CASADES)4 in the cross-border areas of Guinea Bissau and The Gambia have organised cross-border committee
3 Forum for Endogenous Sustainable Development
4 Support Committee for Economic and Social Development of the Ziguinchor and Kolda regions.
members to support border surveillance. The project has received support from both local administration and the community.
WANEP-Guinea in the period under review undertook an online engagement to highlight the experiences and efforts of young people in the fight against COVID-19 and other pandemics. 20 young leaders representing peace organisations were identified and participated in this engagement which has culminated in the establishment and operationalisation of a Peace and Security Agenda in Guinea.
WANEP- Nigeria distributed food palliatives, Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials, hand sanitizers and face masks as measures to control the spread of COVID -19. In addition, community women in Ossisa Community, Delta State were sensitised on Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV).
WANEP-Sierra Leone: On September 8, 2020, the NNS undertook community awareness creation engagements on significance of face mask wearing in the prevention of COVID-19. This has in turn enhanced the promotion of COVID-19 by community members. In addition, the Network has also through radio discussions complemented governments efforts in the promotion of COVID-19 regulations and guidelines.
1.2.4. Sensitisation on Road Safety: WANEP-Togo in the period under review brought attention to an emerging road safety issue concerning containers dropping from trucks and its implications on human security. Alert letters were circulated to institutions such as ECOWAS, Minister of Infrastructure and Transport, Minister of Security and Civil Protection as well as the General Manager of the Autonomous Port of Lomé to draw attention to this menace. The NNS also embarked on radio sensitisation to throw more light on the issue and share recommendations for the safety of road users. Road safety experts were also engaged for this intervention.
1.2.5. Sensitisation Against Drug Abuse
WANEP-Senegal engaged with Security Forces and the Kawsara Emerging Youth Association on sensitisation against the harmful effects of drug use on young people. As part of the advocacy, young people were urged to collaborate with security forces in peer sensitisation and provision of information on drug dealers. In line with this, the Brigade Commander of the Gendarmerie has urged young people to engage with the gendarmerie for inclusive security management. In Keur Massar, similar engagements have been held to reduce drug use amongst young people through sensitization and peer counselling.
1.2.6. Sensitisation Against Youth Violence
WANEP-Sierra Leone engaged in weekly radio advocacy and awareness raising on violence and crime among youths. In partnership with YES-SL, the NNS has helped educate communities about the negative effects of drug use and violence on the community. The sensitization has increased youth and other relevant stakeholders’ engagement in conflict prevention in their communities.
2.0. STRENGTHENING CITIZEN CAPACITY IN PEACEBUILDING AND CONFLICT PREVENTION
2.1. Improving Capacities for effective Peacebuilding: WANEP carried out a number of capacity building interventions to enhance community awareness and conflict prevention engagement at regional, national and local levels. Detailed below are some of the activities carried out in the period under review;
WANEP-Regional as a follow up to the webinar organised on the topic, “Impact of COVID-19 on Youth, Peace and Security in West Africa: Youth Perspectives on Existing Responses and Post-Recovery Plans” produced and published an e-bulletin detailing discussions from the webinar.
2.1.1. WANEP-Benin organised a webinar to raise awareness on the contribution of young people to the promotion of peace in Benin. Two youth organisations in Benin shared their experiences/contribution to peace in Benin. A total of 27 participants5 were engaged during this webinar. In the period under review, the NNS undertook awareness creation and community sensitisations activities on key community challenges such as transhumance, electoral violence, tolerance and social cohesion. The various peace messages were also promoted via social media and member organisations.
The NNS organised a Parliamentarian CSO Workshop on Open Governance and accessibility for Members of Parliament (MPs). Partner organisations included Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD), CSO Coalition for Open Governance, Institue Parlementaire du Benin (IPAB) and the National Assembly. A major outcome of this workshop was the development and validation of the law on public information.
2.2. Strengthening Community Peacebuilding Initiatives
2.2.1. WANEP Ghana under the YAM4PEACE project built the capacities of 200 Interparty Youth Dialogue Committee (IPYDCs) members in Bono East: Techiman Municipality, Atebubu-Amanten, Sene West (3); Northern Region: Yendi, Bimbilla (2); and Upper East Region: Bolgatanga Central,
Bawku Central, Zebila (3). The members of the IPYDCs are now able to identify and analyze early signals of elections related and politically motivated conflicts and respond to them timeously.
2.2.2. In Senegal, the NNS in partnership with the security Forces/ Force de Sécurité (FS) organised an inclusive dialogue workshop for inhabitants of Pikine Ouest Municipality on Juvenile delinquency under the COPS project. This intervention is aimed at improving communication and interactions between security forces and citizens to manage emerging issues in the community. Several awareness raising workshops on juvenile delinquency were organised across the country including in Keur Maasar, Tivaouane Diacksao and other target municipalities. Under the COPS Project also a number of pilot project activities for three (3) CCCs on capacity building have been carried out on communication, advocacy and mediation. The aim is to better harmonise the communication of the CCCs in the pilot projects. In line with this, the WANEP- Senegal team reviewed the techniques of communication with the media, the populations and the security forces. Recommendations emanating from these engagements include; the establishment of communication mechanisms for efficient collaboration between populations and security forces; periodic seminars on the concept of community policing and other mechanisms for enhancing citizen-security forces collaborations.
2.2.3. Under the 2C2P Project, WANEP-Guinea built the capacity of 40 journalists from the community media including 15 women from the (Upper Guinea region and that of Conakry) under the Cohesion Culturelle pour la Paix et Prospérité (2C2P-3)6 Project. The intervention focused on conflict-sensitive journalism; Conflict analysis; Journalist ethics and role in reporting; responsible coverage of elections amongst others.
Under the same project, the capacities of 30 journalist were built on the role of the media in contributing to a peaceful socio-political climate in Guinea. In addition, 25 bloggers’ knowledge were enhanced on the promotion of peaceful socio-political climate in Guinea.
2.2.4. To commemorate International Day of Peace, WANEP-Benin together with its member organisations embarked on an awareness raising and sensitisation campaign from the 21 to 25 September to reemphasize the need for collaborative efforts to address peace-related challenges in the community. These engagements were carried out via direct community contact and social media.
6 2C2P Project- Cultural Cohesion for Peace and Prosperity
2.2.4. Under the Éducation à la paix et à la non-violence (EPNV)7-JS Project, WANEP-Togo continued to engage in media monitoring and advocacy on the removal of violent and erotic content on TV and radio via the monitoring team set up by WANEP-Togo. In the period under review, five (5) television stations and seven (7) radio stations were monitored. There is an estimated 60% drop in the broadcast of violence on TV. The project which aims to reduce violence in the environment of project beneficiaries is undertaken with financial support from Bread for the World.
2.2.5. WANEP-Togo undertook a peace tour where a series of citizens’ debates were organised in each region, with various actors, on themes related to human rights, social cohesion and the preservation of peace and other related themes. This was carried out in Centre de Documentation et de Formation sur les Droits de l’Homme (CDFDH).8
WANEP-Togo also in the period under review organised a virtual meeting via zoom for the for six (6) Comités Régionaux pour la Paix et la Sécurité (CRPS)9 offices.
2.3. Supporting Youth, Peace and Security Agenda for Effective Peacebuilding and Conflict Prevention
2.3.1. Promoting UNSCR 2250 agenda:
To commemorate International Youth Day 2020, WANEP embarked on region-wide online 14-day campaign to change the narrative and status quo on Youth contributions to peace processes in line with the UNSCR 2250 and UNSCR 2419.
Under the 2C2P-310 Project, WANEP-Guinea built the capacity of 200 Young Peace Ambassadors on the UNSCR 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security; the UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security; Job search techniques and other personal development skills. In the period under review, the young peace ambassadors have through direct community contact and social media embarked on advocacy on the promotion of youth participation in peace processes.
2.4. Improving Capacities for Effective Conflict Prevention
2.4.1. Preventing Violent Extremism in West Africa:
In the quarter under review, WANEP through its offices in Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and with support from the WANEP- Regional Secretariat organised four (4) Training of Trainers session on the Preventing Violent Extremism Manual in the Sahel and Nigeria. The objective is to
7 Peace and non-violence education Program
8 Human Rights Documentation and Training Center
9 Regional Committees for Peace and Security
10 Cultural Cohesion for Peace and Prosperity (2CP2).
build the capacity of the 60 selected teachers (15 per country) on the content of the “Preventing Violent Extremism Manual” to enable them build resilience of school children to help prevent violent extremism in the Sahel and Nigeria. The Manual which was developed by WANEP with support from the Global Partnership for the Prevention of Armed Conflict (GPPAC) has received wide acceptance and support from institutions such as the UNESCO, ECOWAS, UNDP in the area of implementation.
WANEP Niger: Again, in Niger, the NNS coordinated the official presentation of the steering committee and the launch of the Prévention de l’Extrémisme Violent dans les Écoles” (PEV-E)11 project. A major aim of the project is to mobilise major actors and stakeholders for synergizing actions for the incorporation of prevention violent extremism in school curricula. Other partners include GPPAC and UNESCO.
WANEP-Nigeria : As a follow up to the Training of Trainers on the Preventing Violent Extremism Manual in the Sahel and Nigeria, the Bauchi State Ministry of Education, School Based Management Committee (SBMC), State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Chiroma Bauchi have pledged their support to implement Teaching Curriculum on Preventing Violent Extremism (PVE) in Bauchi State amongst Youth. There is a planned follow-up to the Committee Chairman on Education, Bauchi State House of Assembly to support implementation of PVE teaching curriculum in schools. In the period under review, 15 teachers were equipped with requisite pedagogical skills to step-down PVE training to students. The intervention has engendered more commitment from teachers towards preventing violent extremism.
11 The Prevention of Violent Extremism in Schools is a project aimed at
Group photo: 2-Day Training of Training on the PVE Manual in in Bauchi
WANEP-Togo in partnership with the Conseil National de la Société Civile (CNSC)12 organised a capacity building workshop for 20 participants on leadership, participatory governance and strategic thinking.
2.4.2. Enhancing Community Capacity in Early Warning and Conflict Prevention:
WANEP-Burkina Faso consolidated its partnership with the Ministry of National Education and supported the development of awareness creation tools on citizenship in schools. Through its Peace Clubs coordinated by the NNS, young people have developed leaderships skills necessary for the sustenance of their activities and programs. The peace clubs in the period under review organised a holiday camp aimed at developing the resilience of young people in the face of violent extremism as well as a sensitisation in one high school on reforestation.
WANEP-Guinea Bissau spearheaded the launch of the Youth, Peace and Security Network focused on the promotion and consolidation of youth contributions to peace processes through collaborative approaches. 25 participants were present at the event.
WANEP Senegal in partnership with the Austrian Study Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution (ASPR) and the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) delivered the Humanitarian Assistance in West Africa (HAWA) Course in Ziguinchor. Present at the training were representatives of CSOs, security forces, police, the gendarmerie, army and fire fighters. The training received raving reviews from participants highlighting the quality of the course content, delivery and coordination.
WANEP Togo in the period under review trained 15 community mediators comprising teachers, kindergarten educators, teaching inspectors, educational advisers, parent leaders, religious leaders, motorcycle taxi drivers in Kpalimè. Themes covered include youth, media and social media: opportunities and challenges; Social cohesion in the context of COVID-19: Non-violent communication in the peaceful management of couples’ conflicts. The training has played an integral role in highlighting the negative impact of violent and/or erotic television content. The NNS also held a preparatory meeting for the CSO-Media-Violent Extremism workshop led by Institute for Security Studies (ISS) and WANEP-Togo.
12 National Council of Civil Society
3.0. PROMOTING PEACE AND SECURITY THROUGH RESEARCH AND ADVOCACY
3.1. Utilising Research results for Advocacy:
3.1.1. Advocacy on Land Management and Use:
Under the Agriculture Governance, Resilience and Economic Empowerment (AGREE) project, WANEP-Ghana facilitated a day’s virtual meeting with key stakeholders in Bongo and Jirapa districts to discuss land lease and acquisition procedures at the sub-national and community levels, and to subsequently adopt by-laws on land lease and use. District Working Committees were formed to coordinate and draft land-use and acquisition by-laws and procedures for Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs).
3.1.2. Advocacy on the conduct of peaceful elections:
WANEP-Guinea held a one-day consultative meeting with political actors, religious leaders and regional coordinators to advocate for coordinated efforts in promoting a peaceful socio-political climate pre, during and post elections.
3.1.3. Promoting food security:
WANEP-Nigeria supported the creation of a platform for small-holder farmers to facilitate direct interactions with stakeholders in the Agricultural Sector in Bauchi State towards the attainment of food security. The platform has enhanced small-holder farmers’ awareness of State Government’s interventions and the appropriate processes involved in receiving farm inputs. A webinar was also organised by the NNS to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on agricultural activities. In recognition of the impact of COVID-19 on farming activities, there are further planned engagements with stakeholders in the agricultural sector.
4.0. ENHANCING GENDER AND WOMEN CAPACITY IN PEACEBUILDING
A cross-section of Small-holder farmers in Bauchi State
4.1. Promoting Women’s Leadership and Decision-making:
4.1.1. Sustaining women leadership interventions: WANEP-Benin under the “Programme de Renforcement des Capacités d’Action des Femmes” (RECAFEM) has built the capacities of 38 out of 51 women elected councillors to enhance their participation at the Local Council. Political parties that demonstrated support to women leadership through the positioning of women on the electoral roll, were presented with awards. The NNS continues to advocate for the removal of Article 184 of the Electoral Code and for more women in political party decision-making bodies and electoral consultations.
WANEP-Niger conducted a training for members of the Sahel’s pool of women’s security expers for Mali-Niger-Burkina Faso under the theme “Leadership” in Ouagadougou, September 21-25, 2020. Amongst the training beneficiaries were nine (9) members of WANEP Niger’’s women pool. Two major outputs of the training include the development of development plans for the Women’s Network in the Security Sector Reform (SSR) as well as an action plan to strengthen women’s leadership in security.
4.1.2. Promotion of women in elections: To complement efforts towards the promotion of women participation in elections, WANEP-Benin organised a TV program on the theme “Women’s participation in elections: What is the outcome? The program which is sponsored by CARE Benin/ Togo (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere for Benin/Togo), the Swiss Cooperation in Benin and the Consortium Baani was composed of 10 participants including five (5) women. This program has engendered behavioural change in the community, and heightened advocacy on the removal of Article 184 of the Electoral Code.
4.2. Support to the Development and Implementation of the UNSCR 1325
4.2.1. Advocacy on the monitoring and implementation of the UNSCR 1325
WANEP-Regional in the quarter under review launched the maiden edition of the “Gender Talk” Series for both its anglophone and francophone audience. The virtual talk which focused on Women, Peace and Security and the implementation of the UNSCR 1325 was organised under the theme “Advancing the Women, Peace and Security Agenda from Community Perspective. The Series brought together key stakeholders and major partners including ECOWAS, AU and UN entities and provided the space for community activists to showcase their interventions to major partners thus creating opportunity for areas of support for local-women peacebuilding initiatives.
Also emanating from the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) desk of WANEP, is the “Gender Connect” e-publication which is focused on highlighting progress made in the WPS agenda. The first edition which highlighted the contributions of women in the fight against COVID-19 contributed towards showcasing WANEP’s role in the promotion of the WPS agenda.
4.2.2. WANEP-Benin in the quarter under review engaged the Ministry of Social Affairs on the UNSCR 1325 to deliberate mechanism for enhanced participation of women in decision-making.
WANEP-Niger organised a national evaluation workshop on the National Action Plan (NAP) of the UNSCR 1325 for the period 2017- 2019. All eight (8) regions of Niger were represented at the workshop. Based on the lessons learnt from the implementation of previous action plan, recommendations were proffered to guide the development of the new action plan.
As part of efforts to promote the UNSCR 1325, WANEP-Nigeria has sustained its radio engagements dubbed “Women Voices for Peace”. The program is ongoing in seven radio stations in seven (7) States across Nigeria – Bauchi, Borno, Delta, Edo, Gombe, Lagos and Rivers States.
4.2.5. WANEP-Senegal via its ECO Citizen Camp sensitised young people on the UNSCR 1325 .Within the framework of camp’s objectives, young people were presented with the opportunity to share experiences on their contributions to the fight for gender equality (SDG 5), right to education (SDG 4) including the reintegration of girls who are victims of pregnancy and early marriage.
Announcement posters for the First “GenderTalk” Series to mark International Day of Peace 2020
4.3. Strengthening Women’s Capacity for Effective Intervention:
WANEP-Regional in partnership with Care, Oxfam, WILDAF and other organisations in West Africa conducted a Regional Survey on the impact of COVID-19 on women in West Africa. The results of the research which was widely circulated across various platforms was released to mark the Day of the African Woman on July 31, 2020.
WANEP- Burkina Faso as part of the Women Leadership Program for Inclusive Security Governance in the Sahel trained nine (9) women in the pool on strengthening security sector reform. As a follow up, the trained women have undertaken step down trainings and outreaches for other women and organisations in their communities. In the period under review, the beneficiaries of the program conducted a research on the Impact of COVID-19 on women. Owing to the myriad of interventions carried out under the WANEP Women in Peacebuilding Network (WIPNET) program, the organisation has been cited as a reference for women, peace and security issues and its expertise periodically sought after.
WANEP-Guinea built the capacities of 80 politicians and politically influential women on electoral violence monitoring and management as part of efforts to mitigate electoral violence pre, during and post the 2020 elections.
WANEP- Senegal coordinated a meeting for selected women’s organisation members of the CSO response group. The aim of the meeting was to elaborate on and initiate actions to promote women’s empowerment after the COVID-19 health crisis.
WANEP-Togo’s Women, Peace and Security program team organised a meeting with the women of the Novissi-Casablanca market. The objective of this intervention was to collate the challenges faced by women in this period of COVID-19 to inform strategies for mitigating its effects.
4.4. Support to the eradication of Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV):
4.4.1. WANEP-Benin organised a training workshop on the Sexual and Reproductive Health Law as part of its contributions towards awareness creation and sensitisation. There were 25 beneficiaries including eight (8) women.
4.4.2. WANEP-Liberia continues to create awareness amongst community structures, community members (men, women, boys and girls), youth groups and male networks (HeForShe) to engender social behaviour change to address Violence Against Women (VAW), Sexual and
Gender Based Violence (SGBV), Harmful Practices (HPs) and Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHRs). The advocacy also includes the acceptance of marginalized groups including LGBTIQs13, persons living with HIV/Aids, and persons living with disability to transform social norms, attitudes and behaviours. A total of 4.067 (2266 female, 1801 males) in 78 communities from 5 counties received public awareness and sensitization on COVID19, and SGBV under a UNWomen supported intervention. The intervention has enhanced the understanding of SGBV reporting mechanisms as well as the COVID-19 prevention protocols.
In partnership with Kvinna till Kvinna, WANEP-Liberia together with animators created awareness on GBV prevention, COVID-19 prevention measures as well as tracking GBV incidences for reporting domestic violence, rape and other relevant issues. Via this intervention, 180 community members were reached in Montserrado county. Owing to this awareness, 35 rape cases were reported in Montserrado with the ages of victims ranging from 2 years to 17 years, (2 deaths and 5 gang rapes).
4.4.3. WANEP-Nigeria increased awareness on safety measures for the COVID-19 Pandemic, Sexual and Gender Based Violence and actions by state and non- state actors including local women to curb the menace.
4.4.4. In Senegal, the CCC of the municipality as part of its pilot project of the COPS project entitled “Help for victims of violence in the municipality of Thiaroye Gare”, organised a training workshop for community actors on techniques to engage security forces as well as assess damage caused by violence against women. The intervention was geared towards raising awareness among actors on the issue of violence against women. As a major outcome, reception and guidance desk for women victims of violence has been set up in the multipurpose center and women’s house of Thiaroye Gare and a helpline number provided.
Again, the NNS engaged in series of advocacy engagements in Gokh Badiénes (neighbourhood godmothers) and Thiaroye Gare towards improving assistance provided to victims of domestic violence. An estimated 40 women trained during the first activities of the pilot project engaged in exchanges bordering on physical and verbal violence. The increase in awareness has engendered wider community support towards finding durable solutions for the prevention of violence against women. There is also increased citizen’s awareness on relevant institutions protecting victims of violence especially child and women’s protection institutions.
13 Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Questioning
5.0. CAPACITY STRENGTHENING AND INSTITUTIONAL DEVELOPMENT
5.1. Sustaining Institutional and Financial Sustainability
In the quarter under review, there has been significant improvements in program and financial reporting across the organisation.
WANEP-Benin organised periodic program meetings, ensured the collation and production of all relevant weekly, month and quarterly reports. The NNS also finalised the draft general report and financial report of the Swiss Cooperation Grant for the May 2020 Municipal Elections. Partners on this project include the Benin CSO Electoral Platform and Direction du Développement et de la Coopération Suisse (DDC). 14 400 copies of the general report were published, and the audit successfully carried out by the accounting firm AUDIREX.
WANEP-Ghana in the period under review held a Board meeting (26th September 2020), and recruited an accounting assistant to support the Accounts Department. It is presently assessing the membership request from Community Focus Foundation (CFF).
WANEP-Guinea recruited a consultant to support the Network in the development of the 2021-2025 strategic plan.
WANEP-Liberia prepared monthly financial reports to UNWomen as well as Kvinna til Kvinna within the framework of their respective bilateral agreements. WANEP-Liberia also underwent CSOs partners (financial & administrative) assessment under the partnership with UNWomen. The Network also organised a management meeting as well as a Board meeting to evaluate present challenges within the organisation and device mechanisms towards the effective resolution.
WANEP-Nigeria is currently in the process of developing its Strategic Plan for 2021-2026. There has also been a collective agreement of the present status of WANEP- Nigeria and the strategic focus for the organisation for the next 5 years. The NNS has also contributed towards institutional development for its Network member organisations.
WANEP-Togo in the quarter under review conducted periodic program and coordination meetings. Preparatory meetings were held ahead of the celebration of 18 years of WANEP-Togo’s existence.
14 Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
5.2. Internship Program
As part of WANEP’s policy to support the mentoring and development of young academics and prospective peacebuilding practitioners, WANEP WANEP-Regional commenced the process for the recruitment of two interns from the University of Glasgow to support its research and corporate communication activities. This is in fulfilment of WANEP’s commitment to the mentoring and development of young academics.
5.3. Collaborations and Strategic Partnerships
5.3.1. Partnership with the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Local Authority
Based on the situational and analytical reports produced as well as advocacy embarked on by WANEP-Guinea Bissau, the NNS was granted audience by the Ministry of Territorial Administration and Local Authority to enable the Ministry to familiarise itself with WANEP’s work. The meeting also provided an opportunity for WANEP to be integrated into the Committee created for the management, prevention and resolution of the conflict in the northern region of the country near the border between Guinea-Bissau and Senegal.
5.3.2. Partnership with Lagos State Ministry of Education
WANEP- Nigeria fostered collaborations with the Lagos State Ministry of Education to educate students in Post Primary Schools on Peace Education and Peer Mediation.
5.3.3. Partnership with ASPR, KAIPTC WANEP-Senegal partnered with the Austrian Study Center for Peace and Conflict Resolution (ASPR) and the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) on the coordination and delivery of the Humanitarian Assistance in West Africa (HAWA) Course in Ziguinchor.
5.3.4. Partnership with UNHCR, UNFPA
WANEP-Burkina Faso participated in the development of the project to support strengthening social cohesion in the North Central region, which is being implemented as a partnership with UNHCR, UNFPA and WANEP.
5.3.5. Partnership with Canada Fund for Local Initiative (CFLI)
WANEP-Ghana signed a seven-month contract worth CAD 30,030.94 with the Canada Fund for Local Initiative (CFLI) which is being upscaled by CAD 4,000. The project which is titled “Women’s Caucuses for Peaceful Elections 2020” or WOCA4PEACE is expected to be conducted in in 6
constituencies in the Northern region (Tamale Central, Saboba Constituencies) and Upper East Region (Bolgatanga Central, Navrongo Central, Zebilla, and Bawku Central constituencies. Under this project, 90 of the Women’s caucuses set up by WANEP-Ghana will be trained. Technical and financial support will be provided to these trained women to implement action plans for the peace advocacy before, during and after the 2020 elections.
5.3.6. Partnership with CARE International
WANEP-Ghana signed a $192,775.17 Modification Agreement effective June to December 2020, with CARE International in Ghana under the Rapid Response Initiative (RRI) being technically led by the Northern Regional Peace Council. In addition, the NNS signed a USD511,847 funding agreement with CARE International in Ghana as part of the Agriculture Governance, Resilience and Economic Empowerment (AGREE) Activity. The project is expected to last over a two-year period.
5.3.7. Partnership with the IRES-RDEC centre
WANEP-Togo held a meeting with the (Regional Institute of Higher Education and Research in Cultural Development (IRES-RDEC) centre in initiate a partnership between the two insitutions. In principle, an agreement was established between the NNS and IRES-RDEC.
5.4. Collaborations and Effective Networking
5.4.1. WANEP-Guinea Bissau participated in the Civil Society forum workshop in in the Quinara region of Buba.
5.4.2. WANEP-Guinea Bissau through the Women’s Policy Platform participated in a workshop on building the capacity of women Parliamentarians, Governesses and political leaders of civil society, in the area of UNSCR 1325.
5.4.3. WANEP-Liberia benefitted from Social Cohesion (SC) training on the 3Bs and 4Ds methodology organised by the Catholic Relief Service (CRS). Three (3) staff of WANEP comprising two (2) males and one (1) female acquired added skills on conflict transformation to the 3Bs & 4Ds methodology in building Social Cohesion.
The NNS also benefitted from a SGBV & Gender Mainstreaming Training under the auspices of the European Union (EU)/Ministry of Gender Children & Social Protection (MOGCSP).
WIPNET Montserrado Peace hut visited the NNS to deliberate on enhancing cooperation between members and leadership.
5.4.4. For International Day of Peace 2020, the FPS / JEP Programs Manager in WANEP-Togo participated in a meeting organized by REPSFECO (Peace and Security Network for Women) at the ECOWAS office. This meeting recognised the need for more effective collaboration to enhance impact. WANEP-Togo also befitted from a capacity building workshop on leadership which is aimed at enhancing leadership and governance standards.
WANEP-Togo and the Mouvement des Jeunes Artisans de la Paix et du Civisme (JAPEC)15 engaged in an experience sharing meeting as a means of enhancing their partnership and programming
In the period under review, WANEP made significant strides in various program areas in spite of the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. At the strategic partnerships and policy levels, WANEP continued to engage its partners at various levels through its incisive contributions in different fora, evidenced-based publications and deployment of its expertise and professionalism. WANEP continued to deploy its expertise in Early Warning and Response to address human security challenges within the region. In particular, via the EMAM project, WANEP contributed to providing timely updates and response pre, during and post elections.
15 Movement of Young Artisans of Peace and Citizenship