Building Infrastructures for Peace in Africa
On the 6th of July 2020, a roundtable discussion on ‘Building Peace Infrastructures in Africa’ took place online and saw the participation of a diverse range of representatives of the United Nations, Member States and civil society, who reflected on their perspectives and experiences in building infrastructures for peace.
Infrastructures for peace comprise all institutions, mechanisms, resources, and skills that create resilience, address root causes of conflict and support peaceful resolution of conflicts. A key characteristic of infrastructures for peace is the focus on building capacities and mechanisms within communities, countries and regions. Strong infrastructures for peace are particularly critical at the local level, where the sources of resilience and capacities for early warning are present and most developed. Without enabling infrastructures that build peace at the local level, there could be no possibility of achieving peaceful, just and inclusive societies and meeting any Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Such infrastructures can take a variety of forms that are reflective of contexts and opportunities in particular communities. The experiences across the African continent offer a number of good practices in building strong and inclusive capacities for peace, such as the establishment of the National Peace Council (NPC) in Ghana, the consistent approaches to transforming traditional spaces to support women’s rights in Cameroon, the advocacy for the adoption of the peacebuilding strategy and economic empowerment projects in Uganda, and efforts to promote justice and enhance civic space in Libya.