Kenya had awaited the presidential elections held on August 9, 2022 with bated breath. The elections were won by William Ruto, who defeated opponent Raila Odinga by just a few percentage points. Ruto succeeds Uhuru Kenyatta, who leaves office having served his two permitted terms. This Spotlight analyzes the reasons for Ruto’s success, and, reflecting on his political career, discusses what can be expected from his presidency. We argue that both his success and his career have been strongly influenced by Kenya’s political history and the power structures of political alliances—especially in the context of previous elections.
Feminist approaches in peace and conflict studies have been neglected for a long time – but they are currently on the rise. Interestingly, a similar trend may be observed in the practice of peacebuilding. While researchers and consultants base their approaches on similar reflections, their challenges with regard to the implementation of feminist approaches are not quite the same. In this discussion, Samantha Ruppel, feminist researcher at the PRIF, and Alena Sander, a feminist freelance consultant, discuss these differences, and emphasize common goals and opportunities of the feminist approach in peace research and practice.
In a speech at the fifth United Nations-African Union Annual Conference on 1 December 2021 in New York, Secretary General of the United Nations António Guterres called for continued unity and a high standard of regional co-operation on the African continent. According to Guterres, examples of this high standard of cooperation can be seen in the joint missions and collaborative frameworks designed to overcome both new and old challenges around peace and security. However, since not only states play a vital role in this unity it is important to review the role of non-state actors in peace and security on the African continent.
Since a few weeks, we observe violent clashes between government forces and local authorities in Tigray, a region in Northern Ethiopia. The Central Government under the rule of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has sent military troops into the region in order to implement law enforcement measures. To understand the conflict and to discuss ways forward, Samantha Ruppel talked with Dr. Yonas Adaye Adeto, Director and Assistant Professor of Peacebuilding and Security Governance in Africa at the Institute for Peace and Security Studies (IPSS) at Addis Ababa University. In the interview, Dr. Adeto argues that ethnic politics is the root cause of the conflict and describes the most important aspects of a successful conflict resolution.
Reading #EndSars in 2020, one might assume the hashtag is trending to inform about the dreaded coronavirus related Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) disease which ravaged the world from 2003. But not in Nigeria. #EndSars refers to a Nigerian a protest movement against police brutality. Although protests have been on-going intermittently in recent years, they gained increased momentum over three weeks ago and have resulted in violence and deaths in the last week. The #EndSars movement, started as a Security Sector Reform movement and has morphed into a cry for good governance in Nigeria.