Leaders of the Great Lakes meet in Kinshasa to assess progress in the implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the DRC and the region
Kinshasa (Democratic Republic of the Congo), 24 February 2022 - The Heads of State and Government of the signatory countries of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the region held their 10th meeting of the Regional Oversight Mechanism on 24 February 2022 in Kinshasa, DRC. The meeting was convened by President Félix Tshisekedi of the DRC with the guarantor institutions of the Framework, namely the United Nations, the African Union (AU), the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR), and the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
The meeting reviewed the political and security situation in the Great Lakes region, as well as progress and challenges in the implementation of the commitments under the Framework since the last meeting in Kampala, Uganda, on 8 October 2018. In doing so, the Heads of State commended the recent intensification of diplomatic initiatives in the region, which resulted in increased trust and an improvement in countries bilateral relations.
The Heads of State also welcomed the peaceful conclusion of recent electoral processes and peaceful transfer of power in several countries. They emphasized the need for stronger cooperation among the countries of the Great Lakes to create an environment conducive for regional economic development. They also reiterated their commitment to transformative actions, such as the realization of women’s equal rights and a 50 percent gender balance in political and peace processes by 2023.
With regards to challenges, the leaders expressed concern that despite ongoing military operations by the DRC and MONUSCO’s support, negative forces with networks across the region, continue to pose a threat to civilians and fuel mistrust and tensions among the countries in the region.
The meeting witnessed the handover of the chairmanship of the Regional Oversight Mechanism between the outgoing President, Yoweri Museveni, of the Republic of Uganda, and President Felix Tshisekedi. At the same time, the meeting was informed about Burundi’s offer to host the high-level meeting next year.
Other Heads of State took part in the meeting, including President João Lourenço of Angola; General Evariste Ndayishimiye, President of Burundi; President Faustin-Archange Touadéra of the Central African Republic; President Denis Sassou Nguesso of the Republic of Congo; and President Cyril Ramaphosa of the Republic of South Africa.
High level participants from the international community were also present including UN Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, Jean-Pierre Lacroix; AU Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat; Huang Xia, Special Envoy of the UN Secretary-General for the Great Lakes region; Bintou Keita, Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of MONUSCO; ICGLR Executive Secretary, Ambassador João Samuel Caholo; and the AU Special Representative to the Great Lakes Region, Micheline Ndiaye.
Of note, the Regional Oversight Mechanism is the main oversight body under the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the region. It meets once a year at Head of State and Government level to review progress in the implementation of national and regional commitments under the Framework. The signatory countries were Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.