Regional Strategy Meeting on Enhancing Traditional Justice in Traditional Justice Process in the ECOWAS Region

The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD-West Africa), in collaboration with the Department of Political Affairs of the ECOWAS Commission, organised a regional strategic meeting on ‘Enhancing Traditional Justice Mechanisms in Transitional Justice Process in the ECOWAS Region’ from 27 to 28 January 2022 in Cotonou, Republic of Benin. The objective of the meeting was to enhance traditional justice measures in justice dispensation and foster reconciliation and peace in post-conflict societies in member states. Drawing on the presentations, discussions and opinions of participants at the meeting, this policy brief summarises contextual expositions and country examples of existing mechanisms; highlights challenges that transitional mechanisms have encountered in integrating traditional justice systems into formal justice systems to enhance access to justice; and explores post-conflict justice dispensation in member states. In addition to outlining key takeaways, the brief highlights recommendations from the meeting that can enhance traditional justice in the implementation of transitional justice, as well as identifying standards and principles that should be core tenants of the proposed ECOWAS Policy Framework on Transitional Justice.

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