Regional Civil Military Specialist
Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso)
The tri-border region of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, referred to as the Liptako-Gourma region, has over the past years become the epicentre of the escalation violence which engulfs the Sahel. The conflict drivers include a complex mix of political grievances, jihadi ideologies, competition over natural resources, protection of interests linked to wide-spread transboundary organised crime, inter- and intra-community conflicts for power and influence, etc. while the perpetrators of violence include several violent extremist groups, armed political movements, criminal groups, self-defence groups and militias as well as national and international military forces. Some of these groups also cooperate, openly or tacitly, around joint interests. Data from the ACLED data base show that reported fatalities for the first half of 2020 are at 90% of the (full) 2019 annual tally for the entire (Western) Sahel, most of which has taken place in the Liptako-Gourma region, pointing to a rapidly deteriorating situation.
It is against this background that international, regional and national actors have increasingly been mobilising in the fields of security, development and humanitarian aid to stem the violence, protect civilians, address humanitarian needs and create the necessary conditions for a return to peaceful governance and development. Recently, the international community, including the EU and the AU, have announced reinforced military efforts as well as much needed initiatives to enhance coordination and cooperation between security and civilian actors to help ensure that tactically successful military action is backed up by national and regional capacity to ensure a return to state-controlled and civilian led security, a reinforcement of state presence, access to social services and support for local livelihoods, with the overall objective of reducing or eliminating violence, build trust and establish the preconditions for addressing the root causes of the conflict and the political grievances.
In this context, UNDP considers the time ripe for pilot testing its approach to stabilisation, understood as support for the transition period from violent conflict to post-conflict early recovery, building on its experience in the Middle East and currently in the Lake Chad Basin. At the same time, and given the rapidly changing context, UNDP aims to take stock of the complex landscape of actors and conflict drivers in Liptako-Gourma and to formulate a value proposition within the emerging strategic policy and programmatic frameworks for the region, in close consultation and coordination with other actors on the ground. In this endeavour, and based on a formal request, UNDP will support the Liptako-Gourma Authority, a sub-regional organisation composed of Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, with which UNDP has an ongoing partnership since its inception in 1970 and which has recently seen its mandate extended from a focus on cross-border cooperation on natural resources management and infrastructure to also include security.
The rationale underpinning the proposed 18 months pilot cum inception phase for the pilot testing and initial establishment of a Stabilisation Mechanism encompasses the following dimensions:
UNDP is now recruiting the task team for implementation of the pilot phase, including a Project Manager, a Civil-Military) Adviser, a Project Analyst & MNE Adviser and a Procurement Specialist. The task team will be based at the LGA and work closely with the LGA Management and Technical Units in the spirit of contributing towards building LGA capacity while also implementing the pilot phase and laying the foundation for a full-scale stabilisation mechanism. The task team, through the Project Manager, reports to the UNDP Western and Central Sahel Hub Manager in Dakar and will work in close consultation and cooperation with the Stabilisation Unit in the Dakar Hub.
This Job Description refers to the Regional Civil Military Adviser. Close coordination and cooperation with security forces, including the military, and supporting political-military dialogue is central to successful stabilisation which depends on the protection provided by the security forces to be able to implement early recovery and trust building interventions in affected areas but also aims at supporting the transition from military to civil led security. The selection of intervention areas for immediate stabilisation shall be aligned on political & security strategies, the design of stabilisation interventions should support enhanced trust in security forces and a transfer to civilian security, conflict analysis and sensitivity must take security strategies into account and overall stabilisation efforts should support military strategies and free up resources for military core operations while also contributing towards capacity building in areas related to Human Rights Accountability and Protection of Civilians. Hence, close and trustful relationship with and between both military and civil security forces at the regional, national and local level and the proposed Stabilisation Mechanism is central to successful stabilisation. This will be the primary task of the Civil-Military Adviser, in close consultation with the Project Manager and Task Team, the Stabilisation Unit in Dakar and existing, or to be established, regional, national and local coordination mechanisms involving security actors, including the local level Partnership Platforms proposed by UNDP under the Stabilisation Mechanism.
Given the role of the UN RC/HC in Humanitarian CIMIC, which is different from a Stabilisation Civil-Military Adviser but where there will be important overlaps and interfaces to learn from and capitalize on, liaison and coordination with the RCO, UNCT and UN Humanitarian Organisations in the region will be another key role of the Civil-Military adviser to be recruited.
Duties and Responsibilities
Establish and maintain a civil-military Network for the implementation of the Pilot Phase:
Analysis, Policy and Advocacy:
Required Skills and Experience
- An advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, international studies, public administration, economics, engineering, earth sciences or a related field, is required. A first-level university degree in combination with an additional two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
- experience in stabilisation, early recovery, humanitarian affairs, emergency relief management, or other related area is required;
- Prior experience in civil-military coordination is required;
- Experience from peace-keeping operations or working in or with a UN Mission is desirable;
- Relevant and extensive field experience from conflict contexts is required;
- Experience in the UN Common System is desirable.
- Fluency in spoken and written French;
- Knowledge of English is desirable
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