Reintegration: Ouagadougou Political Agreement (OPA)

OUAGADOUGOU POLTICAL AGREEMENT 

3.3. Civic Service

3.3.1. The two Parties agree that the Civic Service, which was established for the purpose of providing guidance and job training to all young people in Côte d'Ivoire, shall also accept all young people who have been trained in the use of weapons of war with a view to providing them with guidance and training for future civilian or military jobs.

3.3.2. The modalities of the organization and functioning of the Civic Service shall be defined by decree of the Council of Ministers.

Implementation History

2007

Minimum Implementation

The Ouagadougou Political Agreement provided that all young people who had received weapons training (including Forces Nouvelles personnel) be integrated into the civil service; it was agreed that a decree from the Council of Ministers would finalize the modalities and functions of the civil service. The accord also provided for the establishment of the Integrated Command Centre for carrying out the disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of ex-combatants.

No significant progress was made in terms of reintegrating former combatants back into society other than establishing the Integrated Command Centre on 16 April, which was meant to carry out the disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of ex-combatants, after the presidential decree of 16 March 2007.1 In a meeting held on 14 December, parties reached an agreement to integrate 20,000 Forces Nouvelles combatants into the civil service. An estimated 6,000 combatants would benefit from reintegration programs developed by the Programme National De Réinsertion et De Réhabilitation Communautaire.2 After the meeting, the government announced the launch of the civic service program, which was scheduled to begin on 22 December.3

  • 1. “Ivory Coast Takes Step to Unify Military Forces,” New York Times, March 17, 2007; “Fourteenth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2007/ 593), October 1, 2007.
  • 2. “Fifteenth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2008/1), January 2, 2008
  • 3. “Fifteenth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2008/1), January 2, 2008
2008

Minimum Implementation

The United Nations Peace Building Support Office approved $4 million to fund 1,000 micro-projects for the reintegration of 5,000 ex-combatants. As of October 1, only 3 projects, which benefited 30 ex-combatants, were operational. Reintegration into the civil service was also said to benefit only 15,000 ex-combatants due to limited funding.4 By the end of the year, the civil service and the National Program for Reinsertion and Community Rehabilitation provided reintegration support to 329 ex-combatants and 675 ex-combatants, respectively.5

  • 4. “Eighteenth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2008/645), October 13, 2008.
  • 5. “Nineteenth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2009/21), January 8, 2009.
2009

Intermediate Implementation

In 2009, an estimated 25,000 combatants were expecting reintegration. The national institutions responsible for reintegrating ex-combatants lacked resources to implement related provisions of the accord. Nevertheless, the United Nations Operation in Côte d'Ivoire (UNOCI), in collaboration with development agencies such as the United Nations Development Programme, provided short-term reintegration support to an estimated 3,407 ex-combatants through 225 micro-projects in 23 different locations.6

  • 6. “Twenty-second progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2009/495), September 29, 2009.
2010

Intermediate Implementation

Reintegration of ex-combatants did not move smoothly due to lack of funding for the national institutions responsible for carrying this out. Nevertheless, the 1,000 micro-projects funded by the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund were completed in early 2010 and benefitted 3,637 combatants. The second round of micro-projects, which were expected to benefit over 1,200 ex-combatants, was initiated in September 2010.7

  • 7. “Twenty-sixth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2010/600), November 23, 2010.
2011

Minimum Implementation

After contested elections in 2010 and subsequent conflict in early 2011, the reintegration process did not move smoothly. No substantial progress was made.

2012

Minimum Implementation

The government was coordinating with UNOCI to move combatants through the DDR program.  This included approval on August 2 of a national policy that established a single Authority for Disarmement, Demobilizaiton, and Reintegration (ADDR) as well as a plan for all individuals over 18 years of age who had participated in the fighting in 2002 and/or the post-elections crisis to undergo disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, with an overall caseload estimated at 100,000 former combatants.8

“The Authority for Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration developed a pilot programme for an initial caseload of 5,000 former combatants to be processed at the Anyama demobilization site in Abidjan. The operation targeted mainly elements associated with FRCI who had fought on the side of President Ouattara during the post-elections crisis. A total of 2,000 of those 5,000 former combatants will be integrated into the Government’s penitentiary system, while others will be considered for placement in the customs, water and forestry services.” So far, 500 former combatants had been deployed to work in prisons, while 443 were being trained.9

The UN also reported that two sites rehabilitated by UNOCI in Guiglo and Bouaké were ready for operations, and the remaining six, in San Pedro, Man, Séguéla, Korhogo, Bouna and Abengourou, were expected to be completed by mid-2013.10

  • 8. “Thirtieth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2012/506), June 29 2012; “Thirty-first progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2012/964), December 31, 2012, paragraphs 34-35.
  • 9. “Thirty-first progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2012/964), December 31, 2012, paragraph 36.
  • 10. Ibid.
2013

Intermediate Implementation

The UN reported that by early December, "a total of 15,384 demobilized individuals had benefited from reinsertion and/or reintegration support in the public or informal sectors, of whom 5,459 had officially been reintegrated, including 2,002 into the prison administration, and 9,425 continued reinsertion training, including 2,000 into the customs service and 500 into the water and forestry service.”11

Moreover: “In October, another initiative was launched for 10,065 “self-reinserted” individuals to receive civic and professional training. As at December, approximately 8,000 former combatants had benefited from this project. In addition, UNOCI launched 12 community-based reinsertion initiatives.”12

However, the DDR process struggled both to finalize the details of a national program and with lack of financial resources. "Reinsertion and reintegration in particular remain challenging because of a lack of funding and employment opportunities. While reinsertion and reintegration efforts targeting the public and private sectors were made, including in respect of opportunities for education and in the informal sector, most progress was in employment in the public sector and self-employment.”13

  • 11. “Thirty-third progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2013/761), December 24, 2013, paragraph 36.
  • 12. Ibid., paragraph 37.
  • 13. Ibid., paragraph 40.
2014

Intermediate Implementation

The UN reported that as of December 1, approximately 44,000 former combatants had benefited from reinsertion support. "UNOCI assisted the Government’s reinsertion efforts through the implementation of 79 community-based, countrywide reinsertion projects aimed at the enhancement of community safety and social cohesion, the reinforcement of the weapons collection programme and the payment of transitional safety allowances to approximately 24,000 former combatants.”14

The head of the ADDR, Fidèle Sarassoro, reported in November that 14,000 former combatants would remain at different stages of the reinsertion process by June 2015 and requested the continued support of UNOCI for their reinsertion and reintegration.15

  • 14. “Thirty-fifth progress report of the Secretary-General on the United Nations Operation in Côte d’Ivoire,” United Nations Security Council (S/2014/892), December 12, 2014, paragraph 33.
  • 15. Ibid., paragraph 34.
2015

Intermediate Implementation

The UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 2219 extending the arms embargo on Cote d'Ivoire; the Council noted that it would "review the sanctions regime before the end of next April with a view of further modifying or lifting all or part of the remaining measures in light of progress in security reform, reintegration of former combatants, reconciliation and the fight against impunity.  It stressed the importance, in that context, of holding peaceful and credible elections, as planned for October 2015."16

  • 16. UN Meetings Coverage and Press Releases, “Unanimously Adopting Resolution 2219 (2015), Security Council Extends Arms Embargo on Côte d’Ivoire, Targeted Sanctions,” April 28, 2015, accessed May 5, 2015, http://www.un.org/press/en/2015/sc11877.doc.htm.