'Pathways for Peace' garners collaboration to advance impact in Africa
On 7 September 2018, UNOAU hosted a delegation from the World Bank, the United Nations Development Program and the United Nations Peace Building Support Office in Addis Ababa to promote a recent report authored in partnership between the United Nations and the World Bank, entitled: Pathways for Peace: Inclusive Approaches to Preventing Violent Conflict (UN/WB P4P).
The joint UN/WB P4P report was published in March 2018 and is a first-of-its-kind study in which the UN and the World Bank speak jointly on the prevention agenda. Addressing resurgence of violent conflicts in recent years, “Pathways for Peace” looks at how development processes can better interact with diplomacy and mediation, security, and other tools to prevent the outbreak of conflict. Using unique data on prevention and assembling evidence from the past 16 years, the study shows that prevention is not only doable and cost-effective but also works. A scaled-up system for preventive action could save between US$5 and $70 billion per year, which could be reinvested in reducing poverty and improving populations’ well-being. Representing UNOAU, Mr. Nicholas Shalita emphasized the same by stating that, ‘“Pathways for Peace” demonstrates the potential savings that can accrue by undertaking focused conflict prevention and supporting states to imbed structural prevention through strategic development financing.’
UNOAU facilitated the engagement between the UN/WB P4P and the African Union (AU). In this context, the AU Conflict Prevention and Early Warning Division (CPEWD) hosted the UN/WB P4P team for a presentation of their report at the AU to an audience of approximately 60 participants, including representatives of Member States, Regional Economic Communities (RECs), Regional Coordination Mechanisms (RCMs) and partners in the international diplomatic community. Following the presentation of the report which was well received and prompted discussion, UNOAU facilitated a dialogue between the UN/WB P4P Team and the AU PSD CPEWD Team at during which further collaborative programming was explored, including collaboration on the AU Member State peer review mechanism, namely: The Continental Structural Conflict Prevention Framework, Country Structural Vulnerability and Resilience Assessments (CSVRA).
UN/WB P4P and AU PSD CPEWD focused on the importance of mainstreaming prevention indicators in AU Member State budget and economic and development planning and agreed to work further on specific Member States which self-selected for the CSVRA peer review.
During subsequent follow up, AU PSD CPEWD also invited the UN/WB P4P Team to participate in the annual AU High Level Representatives’ Retreat in Ghana between 24 and 25 October 2018 to explore additional collaborative programming. The AU PSD representative, Ambassador Fred Ngoga summed it all up by underscoring the following, ‘ cooperation between the UN and World Bank is critical for Africa and the African Union in connection with silencing the guns by 2020 and fulfilling the aspirations of Agenda 2063’.