Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, 12 April 2021 - The Management Board of the African Legal Support Facility (ALSF) held its 33rd meeting virtually, from 07 - 08 April 2021, to review the progress of the ALSF’s activities and projects. The Board considered and provided guidance on administrative, institutional and operational matters to enhance the effectiveness of the ALSF and its support to its Regional Member Countries (RMCs).
During the meeting, the Management Board approved the ALSF’s Draft Annual Report and Financial Statements for 2020. The Board also endorsed the extension of the ALSF’s mandate for the next years, noting that while the ALSF had supported more than 290 projects in more than 45 RMCs since its establishment the support provided by the ALSF was still relevant and in high demand, as communicated by the RMCs in their resolution following the High-Level Meeting of the Members of the ALSF held in February 2020.
The Board acknowledged the strong performance of the ALSF in 2020, especially, the ALSF team’s timely, appropriate, and efficient response to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic across its areas of intervention in Africa. The ALSF received 31 requests from RMCs and approved 39 projects in the sovereign debt, extractives, and power sectors, including providing 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 ALSF also supported green energy projects such as the Kingdom of Eswatini’s first competitive procurement process for the development of a 40 MW solar PV facility, and the Government of Gabon’s development of three hydropower plants with a total generation capacity of about 125 MW. The ALSF’s immediate support to the RMCs to deal with the fallouts of the pandemic, especially debt service issues and renegotiation of contracts, was commended by the Board.
As Africa builds back better, it is anticipated that the ALSF’s operations will directly and indirectly contribute to the sustainable and inclusive recovery of the RMCs. The Director and Chief Executive Officer of the ALSF, Mr. Stephen Karangizi, assured the Board that the ALSF will be supporting African countries to respond to the impacts on the pandemic, including through its emergency support facilities and online capacity building resources. To this end, the Board encouraged the ALSF management to continue to be innovative and strategic, focus on delivering relevant results, and adapt to new opportunities in the rapidly changing environments across Africa.
In his closing remarks, the Chairman of the Board, Dr. Kenfack Gaston expressed the Board’s commitment to supporting the management and staff of the ALSF to ensure that the ALSF continues to deliver results and achieve its objectives.
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.
About the ALSF
Created by the African Development Bank in 2008, the ALSF provides legal and technical assistance to and supports African governments in negotiating complex commercial transactions in the oil and gas, mining, and energy sectors, as well as in public-private partnership projects and addressing sovereign debt and creditor litigation issues.
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