Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, 27 May 2021 - On the 25th and 26th May 2021, the African Legal Support Facility (“ALSF” or the “Facility”) held the Annual Meetings of its Management Board and Governing Council respectively by videoconference to review the Facility’s activities in 2020 and to consider various policies and proposals concerning the continuation of the Facility and the effectiveness of its operations.
In particular, the Council affirmed its prior approval of the extension of the ALSF’s term beyond the initial period lapsing in 2022, and authorized the continuation of the ALSF for fourteen (14) more years and any further periods to be determined by the Council. In making this significant decision, the Council noted the accomplishments of the ALSF since its establishment in 2008, the increasing demand for the ALSF’s unique services, the relevance of the ALSF’s support to the regional member countries in addressing the impacts of contemporary and emerging issues such as COVID-19 and climate change, and the efforts of the financial partners and regional member countries to ensure financial sustainability of the ALSF. The Council was confident that their decision will energize the Facility to intensify its much needed support to the regional member countries and to achieve the objectives for its establishment.
The Council also approved several reports and policies including the 2020 Annual Report, a Progress Report on projects implementation, and various internal policies. It was noted that despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Facility approved 39 projects in 2020 - mostly in the sovereign debt, power, and extractives sectors. Notably, the Facility provided legal and technical support to the Federal Republic of Somalia for negotiations leading to cancellation of about 58 percent of the country’s debt from private commercial creditors. The Council also took note of the ALSF’s support for green energy projects, including the legal and technical support provided to the Kingdom of Eswatini in its first competitive procurement process for the development of a 40 MW solar PV facility.
In their meetings, the members of the Management Board and the Governing Council expressed satisfaction with the strong performance of the Facility, and acknowledged the ALSF team’s timely, appropriate, and efficient response to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic across its areas of intervention in the regional member countries.
Looking forward to the remaining period of the current medium term strategy (2018-2022) and the next term of the Facility, the Board and the Council expect the Facility to continue to support the economic recovery and sustainable development efforts of the regional member countries, especially in addressing climate change issues and consolidating support for the Facility’s cross-cutting issues of environmental and social protection, gender equality, and good governance.
The Director and CEO of the Facility, Mr. Stephen Karangizi, noted the dedication and accessibility of the Members of the Board and the Council over the years. He thanked the Members for the confidence reposed in the ALSF team to continue its vital work, and assured the Members of the commitment and zeal of the team to intensify its efforts to realize the objectives of the ALSF.
The ALSF’s Management Board is responsible for the efficient and effective conduct of all operations of the Facility, as well as the approval of its Budget and appointment of its Director. The Board comprises of five members of high integrity and competence, acting in their individual capacity, and are appointed by the Governing Council for a three-year, non-renewable term. The current members of the Board are: Dr. Gaston Kenfack Douajni (Chairman), Ms. Eva Jhala, Ms. Nimatou Feliho, Ms. Chrisitine Agimba, and Ambassador Arve Ofstad.
The Governance Council is the supreme body of the ALSF that meets once a year. It is composed of twelve members representing both Member States and international organizations. The current Governance Council is composed of representatives from Morocco, Guinea, Eswatini, Burundi, Tanzania, the African Development Bank, Belgium, France, Netherlands, United Kingdom and Brazil. The College of International Organizations was represented at this meeting by the African Finance Corporation (AFC).
About the ALSF
Created by the African Development Bank in 2010, the ALSF supports African governments in negotiating complex commercial transactions and provides legal and technical assistance and capacity building for transactions in the extractives and natural resources, energy, infrastructure & public-private partnership sectors as well as support for sovereign debt issues and related creditor litigation.
Eve Ehoura, Communication Officer: email@example.com
ALSF Website: https://www.alsf.int