President Ramaphosa lobbies African countries to join APRM

Monday, February 10, 2020

President Cyril Ramaphosa, as the new chairperson of the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), has called on more members of the African Union to join the agency.

President Ramaphosa assumed the chairship of the APRM -- a self-assessment and monitoring tool of the continent -- on Saturday.

He also called on existing members to implement the recommendations of their reports.

“We must continue to encourage countries that have undergone the review process to implement the recommendations contained in their National Plan of Action.

“These recommendations are key in achieving the much needed impact on our continent. Unless they are executed, the reviews will not translate into tangible action at a country level,” said the President.

Established in 2003, the APRM is a specialised agency of the AU. It serves as a platform for sharing experiences and reinforcing best practices towards political stability, accelerated economic growth, regional and continental integration, as well as sustainable development. It further seeks to foster change in underlying deficiencies in governance and socioeconomic development processes among member States.

As chairperson, President Ramaphosa shall serve a term of two years, from 2020 to 2022.

The President’s chairship coincides with his chairship of the AU, which he assumed during the 33rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

President Ramaphosa assumes the chairship of the APRM at a critical time following the recent expansion of its mandate to include the monitoring of the implementation of Agenda 2063 and the United Nations Agenda 2030 on Sustainable Development Goals.

The 32nd Summit resolved that all members reposition the APRM at the centre of continental efforts to deepen democracy and good governance.

Initially established as a mutually agreed instrument to which member States could voluntarily accede, the APRM has 37 members to date.

Accepting the chairship, President Ramaphosa echoed the goal of the assembly to achieve universal accession to the APRM by 2023.

The President further called for more members to join the mechanism in order to jointly “pursue innovations that will catalyse the positive transformation of the continent”.

The APRM carries out, in fulfilment of its mandate, four types of country reviews. The base review is undertaken once a country joins the APRM. Thereafter, a periodic review is carried out very four years, and member countries may also request a review outside of the mandate review.

The 29th session of the APRM received for the first time targeted reviews, which are commissioned by the APRM. These included targeted reviews on youth unemployment in the Republic of Namibia, fiscal decentralisation in the Republic of Djibouti, and the contribution of tourism to the economy of Zambia.

A country review report was also tabled on the United Arab Republic of Egypt. –