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Governance and APRM Programme

Good governance assists countries to adhere to the rule of law, enhance economic performance and minimise conflict. This programme seeks to stimulate informed discussion and insightful research on governance in Africa, through the lens of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), the continent’s innovative governance monitoring and promotion instrument. The GAP programme also works with civil society organisations to strengthen their interest and meaningful participation in the APRM and related processes in the emerging African Governance Architecture (AGA). We aim to improve the ability of the APRM to contribute to governance reforms, institutions and processes. As a result SAIIA is widely seen as the leading independent authority on the APRM.

The current programme is a collaboration between SAIIA and the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA). GAP also works with the APRM Secretariat on a project to enhance the interaction of the Pan-African Parliament with the APRM.

South Africa is soon due to undergo its second Review under the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), Africa's premier governance tool. We speak with Minister Collins Chabane, of South Africa's Department of Public Service and Administration about the APRM.
The Honorable Collins Chabane, the Minister for Public Service and Administration and South African National APRM Focal Point, opened a workshop today on ‘Popularising the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) through the media’.
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 194, July 2014
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 98, June 2014
SAIIA Policy Briefing No 96, June 2014
Despite the shadow cast by the charges against President Uhuru Kenyatta and Vice President William Ruto at the International Criminal Court, Kenya has been quietly going about compiling its second Country Self-Assessment Report (CSAR) under the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). As an APRM member, Kenya is expected to submit itself to the continent’s voluntary home-grown tool that assesses the state of governance in participating countries. The APRM proposes corrective measures to address governance gaps that emerge during the review.
On 12-13 May, SAIIA, the Ford Foundation and the Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre (NOREF), organised a public panel and an experts’ seminar on ‘Human Rights, Emerging Powers and International Governance: Civil Society Actors and Transnational Advocacy in the 21st Century’.
The 20th commemoration of the Rwandan genocide this year offers an apt opportunity to reflect on how far Africa has come in preventing a reoccurrence of such a tragedy.
Good governance is broadly recognised as a necessary condition for peace and development in Africa. At the EU-Africa Summit held in Brussels on 2 to 3 April 2014, one of the five key priorities identified for joint action was ‘democracy, good governance and human rights’.
An internal Ukrainian crisis dating back to November 2013 took on an external dimension last month. Just as Ukrainians were starting to rebuild their country after months of protests and a change of leadership, Russia’s intervention in Crimea has shifted the focus, and set off alarm bells throughout Europe.
The South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA), the Institute for Research and Debate on Governance (Institut de recherche et débat sur la gouvernance - IRG) based in Paris and the Embassy of France in South Africa held a roundtable on ‘Making Elections More Legitimate in Africa’ on 25 March 2014.
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 177, February 2014
SAIIA Report No 15, January 2014  Download - English (305.72 kB) Governance and APRM ProgrammeThis case study of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) seeks to examine the lessons it holds about South–South knowledge exchange, South–South co-operation (SSC), capacity development and development effectiveness. The report is based on desk research, personal interviews and an online survey.
For the last ten years, the South African Institute of International Affairs has focused part of its research agenda on governance and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM). Since its creation a decade ago, the APRM has been seen as a complicated process that is not well enough understood.
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 172, January 2014
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 171, January 2014
Wednesday, 05 February 2014

SAIIA relaunches APRM Toolkit

On 29 January 2014, the highest decision-making body of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), the Forum, met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to admit its 34th and newest member – Equatorial Guinea – and to review progress in implementation of governance programmes in South Africa and Mozambique. Accession to the continent’s premier home-grown governance assessment instrument is voluntary and involves opening up a country for rigorous scrutiny of its governance practices. SAIIA researchers were there to observe proceedings, captured in the official communique from the Forum and an analysis of the 2014 Forum by SAIIA.
The African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), a voluntary African governance promotion tool, now boasts an unprecedented 34 member states, 17 of which have completed their first reviews. But a lack of political enthusiasm for it – especially by heads of state – is endangering its relevance and impact on governance.
2013 was marked by two important anniversaries related to governance in Africa, with the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) celebrating its tenth year in existence and the African Union (AU) marking fifty years since the establishment of its predecessor, the Organisation of African Unity. Both events were celebrated at the May 2013 AU Summit.
On New Year’s Eve 2014 over 100,000 Ukrainians attempted to set the Guinness World Record for the largest number of people simultaneously singing their national anthem. While such activities normally symbolise national unity, Ukraine remains as divided as ever. The former Soviet republic, independent since 1991 and with a population of 46 million, is faced with a choice of aligning itself closer to the European Union (EU) or Russia. The country’s unique geo-political location between the two actors makes it a highly desirable of area of influence for both.
Travel in Africa can present serious challenges – especially if you are African. A few months ago I travelled to Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia and headquarters of the African Union. I have been traveling to this beautiful country about twice a year for the past decade. What struck me and prompted this reflection on African integration was noticing that in the past few years restrictions on entry have become increasingly harsher. One is tempted to ask questions about the dream of free movement of citizens across Africa – and therefore continental integration and unity.
The African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) has the potential to dramatically change the governance landscape on the continent. However, 10 years after its formation, the APRM has not fully captured the interest of African citizens and media. Why is this the case?