Monday, May 18, 2020

2018 to 2020. The Power of the Diaspora. Beyond Remittances: Engaging the Diaspora to Meet Africa’s Development Financing Needs

Community Imperative or 'Business as Usual' before COVID-19?

Review previous posting from BEMA International on the 'Power of the Diaspora', September 2018.

Business as usual is dead.  Collaborate, partner with BEMA International for the next phase beyond COVID-19, or continue on delayed course and business as usual.

We have solutions.  Or shall we wait over another year and a half?

BEMA International

Wednesday, May 27 at 2:00 - 3:30 pm with Mr. Richmond Commodore, Policy Analyst, African Center for Economic Transformation (ACET), Ghana

According to the African Development Bank (AfDB), African countries must invest USD$600-700 billion annually to meet the development needs of their growing populations. To achieve this investment goal, African governments are increasingly looking to the diaspora, amongst other measures. The African diaspora already contributes enormously to the continent’s economy through remittances: in 2018, Sub-Saharan Africa received an estimated USD$47 billion in remittances (World Bank)—compared to an estimated USD$32 billion in foreign direct investment (United Nations Conference on Trade and Development). Looking beyond remittances, the diaspora community also possesses other resources including knowledge, expertise, and networks that could greatly benefit the financial, trade, and technology sectors—and be leveraged for peace—if properly engaged.



Upcoming Webcast Series on Peacebuilding in Africa

Please join the Wilson Center Africa Program for an upcoming series of virtual events focused on peacebuilding in Africa. These events will feature four Southern Voices Network for Peacebuilding Scholars as they present their research and recommendations alongside experts, policymakers, and practitioners.
To register for one or more of the events, please click on the links below to RSVP individually for each event.

Tuesday, June 2 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am with Mr. Osei Baffour Frimpong, Regional Lead Researcher and Conflict Analyst, West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP), Ghana
The rise of violent extremism has become particularly acute in the West Africa and Sahel regions, and has given rise to a proliferation of international and regional responses, including by the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). Regional efforts to combat violent extremism are anchored by the G5 Sahel and the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), while international efforts include the French Operation Barkhane and the U.S. Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership (TSCTP). This event will assess the efficacy of current regional mechanisms in addressing this rising threat, their articulation and complementarity with international efforts, and propose options to improve the regional response to violent extremism in West Africa.

Wednesday, June 3 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am with Fr. Rigobert Minani, S.J., Research Director, Centre d’Etudes pour l’Action Sociale (CEPAS), The Democratic Republic of the Congo.
For the last two decades, the United Nations (UN) has been present in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Yet, despite the deployment of the world’s largest UN peacekeeping mission, MONUSCO, devastating conflicts that have killed and displaced millions have continued—calling into question the efficacy of UN peacekeeping efforts and other peacebuilding measures. This event will broaden the conversation, analyzing not just the challenges faced by the UN peacekeeping mission but also assessing the larger, multifaceted peacebuilding efforts in the DRC.

Countering Transnational Organized Crime as a Strategy for Peacebuilding in East Africa
Monday, June 8 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am with Mr. Messay Asgedom Gobena, Ph.D. Candidate in Peace and Security Studies, Addis Ababa University Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS), Ethiopia
While transnational organized crime (TOC) is a pervasive global issue, it is especially prevalent and damaging in conflict-affected or fragile states. TOC in East Africa takes many forms, including organized violence, financial crimes, narcotics and human trafficking, piracy, and cybercrime. The issue of TOC is deeply connected to security and peacebuilding. TOC thrives in insecure environments with weak rule of law, corrupt state institutions, and limited cross-border law enforcement collaboration. In many cases violent extremists or other armed groups are also engaged in TOC, a dynamic which both provides resilient funding and reduces the incentives for any peace agreement that may make TOC more difficult. This event will look at how TOC has impacted peace and security and affected peacebuilding efforts in East Africa, and offer policy recommendations for countering the impact of TOC on peace in the region.

The SVNP is a continent-wide network of African policy, research and academic organizations that works with the Wilson Center’s Africa Program to bring African knowledge and perspectives to U.S., African, and international policy on peacebuilding in Africa. Established in 2011 and supported by the generous financial support of the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the project provides avenues for African researchers and practitioners to engage with and exchange analyses and perspectives with U.S., African, and international policymakers in order to develop the most appropriate, cohesive, and inclusive policy frameworks and approaches to achieving sustainable peace in Africa.

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