Democratic Institutions Section contributed to UNIPSIL’s peace mandate building by focusing on the consolidation of democracy and good governance through the strengthening of democratic institutions as stated in the applicable Security Council resolutions and provided for by the UN Joint Vision of 2009.
Prior to the November 2012 elections, the Section amended its priorities taking into consideration election related challenges, draw down of UNIPSIL, and other relevant issues of the national context.
Consequently, the main areas of focus were:
Media - supporting main media institutions to perform in accordance with established professional and ethical standards, including playing a role to ensure peaceful, non-violent elections. To achieve this objective, we supported the following: Sierra Leone Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), Guild of Editors, Independent Media Commission (IMC), Community Radios - Independent Radio Network (IRN) and Cotton Tree News (CTN), Sierra Leone Association of Journalist( SLAJ), and Artists for Peace.
Democratic Governance and Extractives – engaging with key actors in the natural resources sector to ensure transparency and accountability in national resource governance. Specifically, we examined the extent to which state and non- state actors in the sector, adhered to norms and standards espoused by UN, AU and ECOWAS on natural resource management and peacebuilding.
Civil Society Organizations – recognizing the need to work with democratic institutions within both state and society, DI section supported CSOs in their role of eliciting accountability from state actors, donors, UN system and themselves. A CSO policy forum has been created by national CSOs, called the National CSO platform, which worked on all policy issues in seven thematic areas. The Platform held monthly meetings with the ERSG at which matters of national policy and work of the UN were discussed.
Audit of Democratic Institutions - supporting an audit of the main democratic institutions in the country created by statute since TRC report of 2004, with the view to identifying their contribution to the peace consolidation and governance, and making policy recommendations.
Support to National Constitutional Review Process – Supporting organizations within state and society working on constitutional review.
Civil Society Organisations’ Cluster Engagement in Sierra Leone: The rationale and progress to date.
Natural Resources and Democratic Institutions in Sierra Leone. The challenges of building transparency, accountability, and effectiveness in post-conflict national resources governance.