n AFFRIKA Journal of Politics, Economics and Society - The Ezulwini Consensus and Africa’s quagmire on United Nations Security Council reform : unpacking the dynamics

Volume 9 Number si1
  • ISSN : 1998-4936
  • E-ISSN: 2075-6534



African countries’ common position on the need for United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reform (the Ezulwini Consensus) has taken centre stage on the strategic and policy debate in international peace and security. Crimes against humanity or war crimes have been committed in countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) (and specifically the Eastern DRC), Sudan-Darfur, Rwanda, Uganda, Somalia among others. The UNSC has been less effective in dealing with volatile situations that threatened peace and security on the African continent. Thus, African countries seem to have realised that permanent representation in the Security Council by two of its member states would go a long way in addressing critical issues of continental peace and security. The African power and influence in the UNSC veto matrix would probably work in favour of continental interests. Whilst manoeuvres have been made at all levels on the need to reform the UNSC, Africa has found itself in a delicate predicament. This paper unpacks the dynamics surrounding Africa’s quest for UNSC reform and the predicament that the continent has found itself in. It will be argued in this paper that the dynamics surrounding Africa’s quagmire on the UNSC reform revolves around contentious issues such as divergent sub regional interests among the five Regional Economic Communities (RECS) and lack of continental institutional cohesion among other factors. There are various contending African positions in regards to reforming the UNSC. So far, the continent has been unable to decide on which country would be nominated for the permanent seats. Thus, the idea of rotating members on the permanent seats has been raised. What will happen if Africa gets two permanent seats and which countries will take the seats first if representation is rotational? Data was gathered mainly from secondary sources such as books, journals, internet websites and primary sources, more specifically interviews from academics, policy analysts and practitioners.

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