ECOSOCC hosts media and CSO dialogue on international peace and security: ECOSOCC’s contribution to APSA and the UN Pact for the Future


The African Union Economic, Social and Cultural Council (AU-ECOSOCC) today opened a Colloquium on International Peace and Security, focusing on ECOSOCC's contribution to the African Peace and Security Architecture (APSA) and by extension, to international peace and security.

The Colloquium shaped a future of global and sustainable progress, with special emphasis on the role of APSA and is one of the official side-events lending support to the 2024 United Nations Civil Society Conference (UNCSC) taking place from 9-10 May in Nairobi.

The colloquium held in collaboration with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) highlighted APSA's pivotal role in promoting peace and security in Africa; engaged media and civil society to emphasize the crucial role of media and CSOs in advancing APSA's objectives and promoting accurate reporting on peace and security initiatives; contributed to the UN's Summit of the Future by aligning with the objectives of the UN Civil Society Conference as well as contribute to the broader conversation on shaping a future of global and sustainable progress.

The colloquium featured a focused session on the media and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), facilitating an exclusive discussion among journalists, AU departments, government representatives, academic experts, civil society organizations, REC/RMs, think tanks and other international agencies.

Officially opening the colloquium, ECOSOCC Presiding Officer, Khalid Boudali said ECOSOCC had been taking a leadership role on Africa consultations on the Summit of the Future and he urged all CSOs and Regional Economic Communities to support the contributions to the Pact for the Future. He noted that the Pact, underscored the indispensable role of CSOs in driving global agendas on sustainability, peace, and human rights.

Mr. Boudali stressed that one cannot fancy a Pact for the Future without addressing 'Peace and Security' on the continent saying, "The Pact for the Future emphasizes the need for inclusive participation, policy advocacy, and accountability, all of which are fundamental principles that resonate deeply with the objectives of APSA."

William Carew, Head of ECOSOCC Secretariat, spoke on APSA as a cornerstone of the African Union's commitment to promoting peace and security, embodying the collaborative spirit of African nations.

He noted that over the past two decades, APSA had made invaluable contributions to peace and security in Africa.

"Can we discuss inclusive growth and development without looking at the nexus between peace/security and development? Obviously not," he emphasized.

Mr. Carew further invited CSOs to the #ECOSOCC20 commemoration and #APSA20 activities scheduled in Accra, Ghana from 16th to 20th July 2024 saying, "we will use that platform to deepen this conversation and submit an enhanced version of the outcome document from here to the various policy organs of the African Union and by extension, to all African leaders on the margins of the 6th AU Mid-Year Coordination Summit that will also be taking place in Accra around that same period."

Dr. Oita Etyang, COMESA Head of Governance, Peace and Security said the African continent has been saddled with numerous challenges like unconstitutional changes of government; climate change induced conflict etc and that the colloquium spotlights a vital question: is the APSA equipped to tackle the current global security challenges? What is the missing link that needs to be addressed?

"As we delve into these crucial discussions, let's recognize the pivotal roles of CSOs and media in fostering peace and security across Africa," he said.

Today's colloquium is a testament to ECOSOCC's commitment to advancing the role of civil society and media in improving peace and security in Africa.