By: Tim Murithi
Date of publication: 2022
IJR Policy Brief 40: Civil society engagement with the African Union Transitional Justice Policy
This policy brief will assess the role of societal actors in African Union (AU, or the Union) member states in engaging and supporting the implementation of the AU Transitional Justice Policy (AUTJP, or the Policy) at the national and regional level. The Constitutive Act of the AU states that one of the objectives of the Union is ‘to build a partnership between governments and all segments of civil society’ and to promote the ‘participation of the African peoples in the activities of the Union’. This policy brief will argue that Africa’s transitional justice interventions have predominantly been driven by state actors, with the nominal support of non-state actors often in roles that are ad hoc and ineffectively defined. In addition, these transitional justice interventions across the African continent have not had the necessary impact to produce transformative outcomes in terms of peacebuilding and societal healing. This is partly due to the politicisation of state mechanisms and institutions. This brief will conclude with a number of policy recommendation on how to enhance the role of civil society organisations (CSOs) in supporting and implementing the AUTJP.