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Background

Parliamentary Oversight of the Security Sector: ECOWAS Parliament-DCAF Guide for West African Parliamentarians

editors

Hans Born, Jean-Jacques Gacond, Boubacar N?Diaye

Cover

Abstract

In collaboration with the ECOWAS Parliament, DCAF has developed a capacity building tool that is tailored to the needs of parliamentarians in West Africa. The project was inspired by the joint IPU-DCAF Handbook, Parliamentary Oversight of the Security Sector: Principles, Mechanisms and Practices which is now translated into over 37 languages.

The ECOWAS Parliament-DCAF Guide addresses various aspects of security governance in relation to the role, powers, challenges and prospects of parliaments, such as parliamentary oversight mechanisms, defence and security budgeting, and gender mainstreaming, amongst others. It will serve as a vector for the dissemination of the principles of effective parliamentary oversight of the security sector in the West African region.

The Guide is the product of contributions of various experts in the field of security sector governance, particularly from the West African region. The reliance on local experts from diverse backgrounds including contributors drawn from civil society and the media reflects broad based and grassroots engagement. As a joint publication, a draft of the Guide was examined by a Review Committee composed of members of the Political Affairs Peace and Security and Legal and Judicial Affairs Committees of the ECOWAS Parliament at two different fora in Senegal and in Cotonou in 2010. The Guide was presented to the Plenary of the ECOWAS Parliament on 29 September 2010 by the Review Committee and unanimously approved.