The African Union Transitional Justice Policy Roadmap of Implementation is a plan of action that captures the activities, expected timeline and outcomes of support by the African Union Commission to African Union (AU) Member States in the implementation of the African Union Transitional Justice Policy (AUTJP). The Policy is a continental framework aimed at providing guidance to AU Member States emerging from violent conflict, war and repressive regimes to develop context-specific and comprehensive policies, strategies and programmes towards achieving democratic and socio-economic transformation, sustainable peace, justice, reconciliation, social cohesion and national healing.
The Policy defines transitional justice as “the various (formal and traditional or non-formal) policy measures and institutional mechanisms that societies, through an inclusive consultative process, adopt in order to overcome past violations, divisions and inequalities and to create conditions for both security and democratic and socio-economic transformation.” It further articulates a set of common concepts and principles as blueprint for developing and strengthening peace agreements and transitional justice institutions and initiatives in Africa. It provides avenues for the consolidation of peace, reconciliation, and justice processes in Africa to prevent impunity. The policy prescribes methods to end repressive rule and conflicts, and ways to nurture sustainable peace with development, social justice, human and peoples’ rights, democratic rule, and good governance. In addition, it establishes African Union benchmarks for assessing compliance in efforts to combat impunity on the continent.
Objectives of the Policy
The overarching objective of the Policy is to provide policy parameters on holistic and transformational transitional justice in Africa. It offers guidelines, possible benchmarks and practical strategic proposals for the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of African transitional justice processes. 1 The AUTJP specifically proffers guidelines on how to approach and entrench accountability, truth, justice and reconciliation in the aftermath of gross human rights violations in AU Member States.
The Policy further consolidates all AU related transitional justice provisions into one continental framework; strengthens the AU’s leadership role and supports Member States in implementing their governance, rule of law, human and peoples’ rights and reconstruction agendas. Although the Policy is closely linked to international norms and standards on transitional justice, it takes into account the nuances of the African continent such as African traditional justice system, socio-economic rights, the balance between reparations and development, various understandings of democracy and controversial issues like the granting of amnesty. The Policy is also designed to assist Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and Regional Mechanisms (RMs) to support Member States to initiate and implement TJ processes in a coherent and coordinated manner.