Dr. Catherine Lena Kelly
Session 1 | March 1, 2022
Roles of Parliament in Democratic and Civilian Security Sector Governance
DASD Chidi Blyden
- Dr. Ken Opalo
- Dr. Boubacar N’diaye
- Honorable Jefferson Kanmoh
- Understand the core roles that parliaments play in democratic and civilian security sector governance, as well as parliamentarians’ key responsibilities in the domains of oversight, accountability, and outreach
- Identify the current security threats and emerging security trends in Africa that parliamentarians are likely to encounter as they fulfill their roles and responsibilities
- Analyze how recent trends in African governance relate to the advancement of citizen security, and how parliaments fit into this picture
- Examine African Union commitments to democracy, human rights, and governance that promote parliamentary roles in accountability and oversight
- What makes for an effective legislator, even in a system where there may be a heavy concentration of power in the executive branch of government relative to the legislature and the judiciary
- Experts say that the quality of parliamentary oversight of the security sector is a function of three factors known as the “3As”: ability (whether legislators have the resources and capacity to conduct oversight), authority (whether legislators have the legal mandate and sufficiently detailed standing orders to conduct oversight), and attitude (whether legislators have the motivation and incentives to conduct oversight). Where does your national or regional parliament stand on each of these three factors and why?
- Do you agree with some of the plenary speakers who argue that African legislatures are on the rise? In particular, do you find that African legislatures are increasingly asserting their oversight roles? Why or why not?
- How do you think that national parliaments’ successes and challenges with security sector oversight have been affected by factors like the intensity of partisanship in a country, the engagement of the national parliament with regional parliamentary bodies, and the commitment of a country’s leaders to African Union principles of legislative oversight and good governance?
Session 2 | March 8, 2022
Oversight: Overseeing Defense and Security Budgets
- Dr. Willene Johnson
- Mr. Neil Cole
- Analyze approaches and tools that parliamentarians have to oversee defense and security budgets, and how they apply throughout the budget cycle
- Discuss how parliaments can and should deal with secret and classified information that is relevant to budgetary oversight
- Highlight the role played by budgeting in the realization of national security objectives and delivery of security and justice to the citizens.
- In your experience, what have been the conditions that facilitate parliament’s effective oversight of security and defense budgets and how do they relate to the 3As (ability, authority, attitude)? Can you share any specific examples of how your parliament has been successful in this process, and explain what enabled that?
- What are currently the principal challenges that parliamentarians face in carrying out effective budgetary oversight of the security and defense sector in your country? Could you provide a specific example to illustrate?
- To what extent does work across party lines influence budgetary oversight in your country, whether formally and informally? How important is multiparty debate and discussion to legislative oversight of security sector budgets and expenditures?
- How have you and your colleagues dealt with issues related to secrecy of defense and security budget and expenditure information, or related information about security force deployments, missions, and projects?
Session 3 | March 15, 2022
Accountability: Fostering Security Force Professionalism and Transparency
- Dr. Emile Ouedraogo
- Ms. ‘Kemi Okenyodo
- Dr. Michael Ofori-Mensah
- Analyze approaches and tools parliamentarians have to foster security service professionalism vis-à-vis citizens, and how best they can use those tools to address security actors’ abuses or breaches of ethics and conduct
- Analyze approaches and tools that parliamentarians have to ensure transparency in security and defense procurement, and how best they can use those tools to prevent corruption and improve the efficient and effective management of security resources
- Highlight the role played by transparency and accountability of the security forces in the realization of security objectives and the delivery of security and justice to citizens
- How much is transparency within the defense and security sector a concern in your country? What have been your parliament’s successes and failures in addressing these issues, and do the 3As (ability, authority, attitude) explain this?
- How much is the conduct, performance, ethics of the security services and their respect for citizens’ rights and the rule of law issues of concern in your country? What have been your parliament’s successes and failures in addressing these issues, and do the 3As (ability, authority, attitude) explain this?
- To what extent does a culture of secrecy in the defense and security sector play into parliamentary access to relevant information about procurement practices or professional and ethical conduct of the security forces?
- How do you get information from other government institutions about the accountability of the security sector, both for its upholding of human rights and for its fiscal transparency?
- Are there insights you can share with colleagues about tools and techniques for obtaining information from security sector institutions on these topics?
- Are there insights you can share with colleagues about tools and techniques for obtaining information from supreme audit institutions, as well as independent anti-corruption and human rights commissions?
Session 4 | March 22, 2022
Outreach: Bringing Civil Society and Constituents into Security Policymaking
- Dr. Christopher Fomunyoh
- Dr. Joseph Asunka
- Ms. Kimberly Smiddy
- Consider the ways that parliaments and parliamentarians can help governments advance security policies that reflect the interests of constituents and incorporate civil society expertise
- Compare and contrast different ways that parliamentarians can engage civil society and bring constituents into security policymaking and oversight, whether through side visits, research consultations, constituency funds, or otherwise
- Analyze what tools parliamentarians have to enhance communications with constituents and communities about security issues and policies, so as to build trust between them and security actors
- What are the security trends and challenges that you feel the most need to take into account as a parliamentarian in your country or region? What do your constituents think about these issues?
- What kinds of outreach and constituency service do you engage in on security and defense issues? What kinds of challenges do you face and how do those challenges relate to the 3As (ability, authority, attitude)?
- What have been some of the successes and challenges that parliamentarians in your country or region have had in interacting with civil society and the media on defense and security oversight issues? Are there any good practices or lessons learned that you can share?
- Have you or your colleagues held side visits with security sector officials or sought the analysis and advice of academia or civil society to inform your work on defense and security oversight? What advice do you have for others about how best to go about these activities?
- Discuss some key principles of public financial management and democratic governance in the security sector and why are they so important during uncertainty and crisis.
- Share challenges of introducing and implementing the principles of public expenditure management and resources mobilization in the security sector, particularly in off-budget/military businesses, payroll and procurement.
- Examine the lessons learned and best practices for effective implementation of public expenditure management and mobilization of security resources in Africa.