The Commission of the African Union (AU), concluded the validation workshop on the draft Maputo Strategic Five-Year Work Plan (2016-2020) on the African Standby Force (ASF), at the AU Headquarters. This workshop was convened following the directive given by the 9thSpecialised Technical Committee on Defence, Safety and Security (STCDSS), which took place on 4 June 2016, in Addis Ababa, that the Commission and the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms (RECs/RMs), should jointly finalise a work plan that will define the next five years of the post-Full Operational Capability of the ASF.
Accordingly, the workshop brought together representatives of AU Member States, RECs/RMs, United Nations (UN), some partners and staff from the AU Commission. Opening the workshop, the Acting Director of the Peace and Security Department, Dr. Admore Kambudzi, underscored that the finalization of the draft Maputo Work Plan is a critical priority mandated by AU Member States and will serve multiple functional purposes, including, but not limited to coordination with RECs/RMs, resource mobilization and enhancing partnership with the UN and other bilateral partners. The Acting Head of Peace Support Operations Division, Brig-General T.K. Golau re-iterated the significance of the finalisation of the work plan as articulated by the Acting Director.
Participants exchanged views, reviewed progress made and provided their inputs on how to harmonize their respective work-plans in order to develop a comprehensive plan. ''This Strategic Work Plan will benefit from the strengths and gaps identified in the implementation and evaluation of previous ASF Roadmaps'', said Dr. Jide Okeke, Head, Policy Development Unit, while presenting the Work Plan.
In his concluding remarks Dr. Kambudzi, thanked the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD) for funding the workshop and the workshop participants for their fruitful deliberation.
The final work plan will be presented to the 10th STCDSS, for consideration and further action.