PSC Program of Work for the Month of March 2019

Date | 27 February, 2019

Kenya assumes the role of the monthly chairpersonship of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) for the month of March. The provisional program of work includes five main sessions on substantive issues including one country specific update and one open session. During the month, the PSC is scheduled to undertake a field mission and convene an induction retreat with the newly elected and returning PSC members.

The March PSC program of work starts on March 4thwith a briefing on the situation in Somalia. The second agenda item for the day is dedicated for the preparation of the field mission to South Sudan taking place on March 5-8.

After the four day field mission to South Sudan, the PSC will convene on March 12 to adopt the provisional program of work for April and to prepare for the induction of the PSC new members. It is to be recalled that at the recently concluded African Union (AU) Summit, three new members namely Lesotho, Burundi and Algeria have been elected to join the PSC and two, Kenya and Nigeria have been reelected for another term. The new members are expected to commence their three-year term in the PSC on 1 April. They will however start attending the PSC meetings from March 18.

On March 14 the PSC is scheduled to have a briefing on the proliferation of small arms and light weapons and its impact on the AU plan for Silencing the Guns in Africa by the Year 2020.
This theme forms a major part of the AU Master Roadmap for Silencing the Guns by 2020.

The only open session of the PSC is planned on March 19 and it will focus on the role of women in conflict prevention and post-conflict peace building. The meeting will receive a briefing from the Special Envoy of the AU Commission Chairperson on Women, Peace and Security as well as from AU member states, representative of RECs, UN, non-AU member states and civil society organizations.

On the same day, the PSC will again discuss the preparations for the induction of the PSC new members scheduled to take place by the end of the month.

The next PSC session is scheduled for March 21, where the Council is expected to receive a briefing on the nexus between maritime security, safety and development of the blue economy in Africa. The session is expected to examine the link between peace, security and development within the context of maritime domain and the overall Africa’s economic growth. The session may receive briefings from the Commission in line with instruments such as the existing Charter on Maritime Safety and Security and Development in Africa adopted in October 2016 and the 2050 Africa’s Integrated Maritime Strategy (2050 AIMS) adopted in 2014.

On March 26 the PSC will have a monthly update on the implementation of the harmonization of ACIRC into the ASF in line with the PSC decision of its 821st meeting held on 9 January 2019. The PSC tasked the Chair of the month and the Commission to provide monthly updates on the harmonization until July 2019. The Commission is also expected to report on the completion of the harmonization of ACIRC within the ASF by February 2020 at the Ordinary Session of the Assembly.

In the last week of the month, on 27-30 March the induction of the PSC new members is scheduled to take place in Zanzibar.

In addition to these agenda items, the provisional program of the month also envisages in footnotes three items that may be added in the course of the month. The first is the meeting of the committee of experts which the exact dates are yet to be confirmed. The second one is the briefing by the Chairperson of the PSC to the PRC on the activities of the PSC during the month of March. The last footnote provides the timeline for the visit of the Military Staff Committee to the Continental Logistics Base in Doula, Cameroon, on 19-22 March.