Accra, March 8, 2018: Twenty-one participants from seven countries across Africa enrolled for the 2018 edition of the Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration (DDR) Foundation course which was held from 5th – 16th February. The course was officially been opened by the Deputy German Ambassador to Ghana H. E. Hans-Helge Sander at the Multi-Purpose Training Facility (MPTF) at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC).
Also in attendance was the Commandant of the Centre, AVM Griffiths Evans, the Programmes Manager in charge of GIZ support to KAIPTC, Miss Nana Odoi and the Director of Training of KAIPTC, Colonel Robert Affram.
This year’s group of participants comprised staff from the United Nations Missions in Sudan, staff from the United Nations, Ministries, and Civil Society Organizations, International/Local NGOs as well as Military Personnel. The diversity of participants ties in with the Centre’s strategic objective of developing continental capacity in Peace Operations.
This year’s training course focused on the ended DDR programme in Ivory Coast and the upcoming DDR planned process in Mali; it also featured a facilitator from the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations (UNDPKO), Mr. Mario Carvalho.
With funding from the German Government through GIZ, the DDR course has been supported financially and technically since 2007.
The aim of the DDR Programme is to support voluntary disarmament and discharge of combatants from armed groups and assist them with sustainable reintegration into society. This DDR Foundation course covers modules on concepts, policies, strategies, operations, as well as associated cross-cutting issues such as gender, small arms control, human rights, and specific needs groups.
Delivering his opening remarks, AVM Griffiths Evans stated that DDR programmes are being implemented in very dynamic contexts, innovative and context-specific approaches that are needed to tackle the challenges.
“Therefore, this training course does not only conform to UN Integrated DDR Training Standards but also reflects recent developments in the field of DDR to provide you with a high international training standard in this area”, he added.
In his concluding remarks, he hinted that the Centre is a member of the Integrated DDR Training Group and has graduated a total of 610 participants; some of whom are working in UN/AU missions and National DDR Commissions in Africa and at the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations (UNDPKO) in New York.
E. Hans-Helge Sander encouraged participants to learn from, and share their experiences and expertise with the facilitators and their colleagues in order to guarantee an inspiring learning experience.