SAIIA Roundtable: The African Peer Review Mechanism - Progress and Prospects
"The roundtable agreed that, seven years on, the APRM has notched up notable achievements. It has defied the sceptics by attracting 30 member states to accede voluntarily to its rules. After a slow start, a dozen states have now completed their Country Review Reports. These paint a mostly frank and comprehensive picture of governance achievements and shortcomings. States are beginning to implement their National Programmes of Action (NPoAs). The process has carved open political space, engendered national dialogue on governance and fostered peer learning at many levels. It has highlighted common cross-cutting issues – such as land use, electoral processes and managing diversity – that affect all African countries to one degree or another. Reports have diagnosed impending crises, even if their warnings went unheeded. Heads of state, citizens and development partners have sustained their interest in this innovative process, and progress has been encouraging. Perceptions matter. And there is a need to share the remarkable lessons that this unique exercise has generated, if the system is to continue to grow, learn and change."