Akina Mama wa Afrika (AMwA)

Feminist Leadership Development

Kampala, 27th June 2016 – Under the auspices of the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) Civil Society Regional Forum Uganda Chapter Chair Akina Mama wa Afrika in partnership with Nairobi Peace Initiative-Africa launched a Hand book that seeks to contribute to strengthened partnership between civil society in the Great Lakes region with those of sub-regional intergovernmental organisation such as the ICGLR. 

In the years prior to the establishment of this intergovernmental organisation, eight out of the eleven ICGLR countries experienced violent conflicts. All of these conflicts had regional implications and linkages that contributed to the destabilization of neighbouring countries and the region as a whole. By creating the ICGLR, governments of the region recognized that political instability and conflicts in their respective countries have a considerable regional dimension and thus require a regional response.

The ICGLR was established under the principles of ownership and inclusiveness by all the member state governments and other stakeholders, including official forums that represent different stakeholders. These include the Parliamentary Forum, Regional Youth Forum, Regional Women Forum, Private Sector Forum and the Civil Society Forum. This focus on people, participation through regional forums for civil society and emphasis on providing regional solutions to national problems and vice versa, also marks the 21st century character of the organisation.

“We are convinced that multilateral organizations must become more responsive to the needs and concerns of the population of their member states and that civil society from those countries must seek to establish productive relationships with those organisations. This will not only enhance a sense of ownership of these institutions by the people but will also help them meet their purpose, making them more effective in their efforts to prevent violent conflicts and foster more peaceful, stable, inclusive and prosperous societies” said the Executive Director of Nairobi Peace Initiative- Africa, Walter Odhiambo

The CSO Handbook provides practical information about the structure of this multilateral body and its decision making process and cycles. It highlights the importance of engaging with the ICGLR and indicates different spaces in which people from the region can participate to develop policies and actions and jointly strengthen the organization in the prevention and management of armed conflicts. 

“As we discuss today, we all know what is happening in Burundi in the aftermath of a controversial election. We all remember the genocide in Rwanda, the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda, how the Democratic Republic has been ravaged from the inside and outside, and the thousands of refugees both in this region and those trying to leave this continent for other regions only to encounter in some instances a worse fate. We know of other Presidential elections coming up, other constitutions which should not be changed, the lack of democratic institutions, all these challenges require concerted efforts of Government and Civil Society to bring peace, security and development in the great lakes region” said Executive Director of Akina Mama wa Afrika, Eunice Musiime

Therefore the launch of this handbook is timely and it will be a resourceful tool for ICGLR Civil Society, sub-regional intergovernmental organizations and other actors as we collectively work to secure sustainable peace and development in the region.

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For More Information Contact Irene Kagoya on +256 775110881/ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.