Kenya calls for enhanced conflict resolution efforts in Africa

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. /VCG
Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. /VCG

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday decried the rising number of conflicts in Africa and called for enhanced conflict resolution efforts on the continent.

Kenyatta, who spoke during a virtual United Nations Security Council (UNSC) high-level open debate on the cooperation between the UN, regional and sub-regional organizations in conflict prevention and resolution, called for joint efforts to end the growing number of conflicts in the continent.

“History and experience remind us that the closer you are to a problem, the better you understand its complexity and its workable solutions,” Kenyatta said in a statement issued from his office on Monday.

The Kenyan leader regretted that there are still too many conflicts brewing in Africa which he said require collective effort to contain, adding that time has come to scale up the world’s conflict resolution efforts especially in Africa.

Kenyatta, who is also the current chairperson of the African Union Peace and Security Council told the meeting that peace and stability were a key priority for Africa.

Kenyatta added that the African Union has put the peace agenda high on its priority list and established several institutional structures to address conflict prevention and resolution.

He said regional and sub-regional organizations have a greater stake in the conflict and provide the proximity and insights, which are critical in conflict resolution.

Kenyatta whose country is participating in foreign peacekeeping missions made five recommendations to the UNSC including a proposal for more support for peace-keeping efforts, consideration of the cross-border dimensions of conflicts, and proper disarmament, demobilization and reintegration programs to help lessen the burden of conflicts in Africa.

He urged the UN to be at the forefront in assisting countries that are emerging from conflict to develop their civil service and to provide more humanitarian assistance in conflict environments.

The Kenyan leader also urged the UN to consult and leverage more on regional conflict resolution mechanisms to strengthen peacekeeping activities in Africa.

He said disarmament programs should ensure that fighters are returned to lawful civilian life so as to guarantee sustainable peace and successful post-conflict reconstruction.

The president said Kenya had developed one of the most comprehensive conflict disengagement and reintegration programs in Africa that can offer capacity building and training to others.