In January 2013 it took just three days for the Seleka Coalition and the Government of the Central African Republic to reach a peace agreement. Kennedy Tumutegyereize and Nicolas Tillon of Conciliation Resources' East and Central Africa programme analyse what the prospects are for sustainable peace without wide public participation.
While the media spotlight occasionally shone brightly on the LRA conflict during 2012, throughout the year the four countries affected by the ongoing violence continued to feel its impact to varying degrees. Reviewing trends, we suggest that peace can be found where top-down and bottom-up approaches meet.
There are significant challenges to peace prospects In East and Central Africa. With the African Union and United Nations’ recent joint declaration to launch a regional military strategy against the Lord’s Resistance Army, added to public attention focusing on calls for an escalation of force, we share our local partners' concerns that the response must centre on the protection of civilians. Lessons must be learnt from the past.
Jenny Norton travelled to Uganda to work with local partners who were keen to build up their community media capacity. Here she reflects on the five days she spent with members of the Regional Civil Society Task Force and how their local peacebuilding backgrounds are helping to amplify grassroots opinions on the LRA conflict.