The United Nations Security Council on Thursday, December 21, adopted a Ghana-led African resolution that recognises the need to support and fund Africa Peace Support Operations.
This would address all threats to international peace and security in Africa, beyond the traditional peacekeeping operations of the United Nations.
Under the resolution, all AU-led peace support operations mandated by the UN Security Council will receive UN funding from the UN-assessed contributions up to 75% of their annual budgets.
The remaining amount is to be jointly mobilised by the United Nations and the African Union from the international community as extra-budgetary resources.
The Council also committed to considering all viable options in the event of significant shortfalls in resource mobilisation.
The Resolution was submitted by Ghana, together with the other African countries on the Security Council, Gabon and Mozambique (the A3), with the authority of the African Union Peace and Security Council, on which Ghana currently serves.
The dramatic outcome of the complex and difficult negotiations comes 10 days before the end of Ghana’s term as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.
When Ghana announced its priorities at the beginning of its term in January 2022 to secure the agreement of the Security Council to change its traditional response to international peace and security, especially in Africa, where violent extremism and terrorism had overtaken traditional conflicts that attracted UN peacekeeping, many had expressed skepticism.
Attempts in the past to agree on the use of UN-assessed contributions to support African-led operations had failed in the face of opposition from some Permanent Members of the Council and other large contributors to the UN. Ghana’s ambition was to achieve all those goals within its 2-year term.
As the President of the Council for November 2022, both President Akufo-Addo and Foreign Minister Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey held high-level signature debates on the themes of the increasing threats of violent extremism and terrorism in Africa, especially in the Sahel and coastal West Africa, the need for funding Africa-led operations through UN assessed contributions and the importance of ensuring balanced funding for both military operations and addressing socio-economic and climatic root causes of conflicts.
One key objective was to starve terrorists of conditions for radicalization and recruitment from vulnerable communities.
With the adoption of the framework resolution, it is understood that the plans of ECOWAS and relevant security initiatives in our region, such as the Accra Initiative and the Multi National Joint Task Force, battling Boko Haram, will potentially benefit from the needed resources and international support to defeat terrorism and violent extremism in the ECOWAS region.
Commenting on the adoption of the Resolution, the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchwey declared, “Today is a great day for Africa and diplomacy.
“Working with our partners around the world, we have taken a giant step to end the many threats to international peace and security in our region.
“Our people deserve the peace, stability and progress that successful peace support operations will bring.
“The distractions to our regional integration project and the pressure on development resources from our security needs would ease as we go forward. I congratulate President Akufo-Addo for his leadership.
“I also commend our team in New York, my own Ministry and the Multi-Stakeholder Working Group on the United Nations Security Council, which I set up to advise me”.