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Tool 4: Effective management of external support to security sector reform

16 December, 2015



Tool 4 of the Toolkit for Security Sector Reform and Governance in West Africa, published in 2015, addresses key challenges that West African states may face when extending their cooperation relationships to the field of security governance.

It aims to provide governments with practical guidance on how to manage external support to SSR to ensure alignment with national priorities, cost efficiency, mutual accountability and to achieve sustainable results.

This Tool is mainly aimed at members of national administrations and governments of ECOWAS member states specifically in charge of planning, managing, and overseeing internal and external resource allocation to SSR, but can also be useful for oversight stakeholders - such as the media, academic research centres, and civil society observatories and organizations - monitoring the national security agenda, the SSR implementation, the expenditures of the national budget or cooperation policies.

About the toolkit

At the request of the ECOWAS commission, DCAF has developed several publications collectively entitled “The Toolkit for Security Sector Reform and Governance in West Africa". The main objective is to support the implementation of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) regional regulatory framework for SSR/SSG through practical advice and guidance tailored to the West African context and based on regional experiences. It specifically aims to facilitate policy development, implementation, and management of SSR processes at the national level.

This framework has been translated into practical guidance that takes into account the national contexts of West Africa and elucidates, for instance, the issues of parliamentary oversight, good financial governance of institutions, as well as the consideration of gender dimensions in SSR/SSG. One of the main challenges has been to develop tools that can be understood and used by the various stakeholders, including the Executive, the Parliament, the Judiciary, civil security sector oversight institutions, and civil society. This should contribute to the development and strengthening of a West African security strategy to support the regalian imperative of democratic governance, protection, and defence.


Ornella Moderan