AFSIT aims at providing support to countries undergoing complex political transitions and countries at risk
The African Union Commission (AUC) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched the Africa Facility to Support Inclusive Transitions (AFSIT), on the side-lines of the 5th African Union Mid-Year Coordination Meeting, in Nairobi on 15 July. AFSIT aims at providing support to countries undergoing complex political transitions and countries at risk.
In May 2023, African Union (AU) Heads of State and Government reiterated a zero tolerance stance against unconstitutional changes of government (UCG) and called for collective action in developing a robust mechanism for deepening democracy and collective security on the continent. The response to this call is the AFSIT, an innovative initiative aimed at providing comprehensive programmatic support to African countries undergoing complex political transitions.
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Ambassador Bankole Adeoye, AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security has termed AFSIT a practical and pragmatic mechanism that will boost the capacity of all actors in the democratic governance space, and capacitate those who will stand as watchdogs for democracy.
Ahunna Eziakonwa, UNDP’s Assistant Administrator and Director of the Regional Bureau for Africa, said the Facility calls for a re-focus on development, including good governance, human rights and access to basic services such as education and healthcare. “This is a critical means to not only prevent coups, but also sustain peace,” he said.
The primary objective of AFSIT is to assist in the development of credible, inclusive and legitimate transition roadmaps, mechanisms and institutions, ultimately leading to the restoration of constitutional rule, democracy and stability in relevant countries.
The implementation of AFSIT is projected to occur in phases, with initial priority given to addressing military coups and instances of democratic process manipulation. AFSIT will also extend support to ‘at risk countries’ teetering on the edge of a political crisis, as identified by early warning signs and data from the AU and the UN.