19 March 2013. Mary Robinson, Vice-President of the Eminent Advisory Board of AWEPA, has been appointed by Ban Ki-Moon as the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Great Lakes region of Africa. She will play a key role in supporting the implementation of the Peace, Security and Cooperation Framework for the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Great Lakes region of Africa, signed by 11 African countries in February 2013.
Ms. Robinson was a member of the Irish Parliament from 1969 to 1989 and became a member of AWEPA in the 1980s. She was elected the first woman President of Ireland (1990-1997) and served as United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (1997-2002). A human rights advocate, she serves as President and Founder of the Mary Robinson Foundation.
The framework was adopted on 24 February 2013 and signed by 11 African countries: Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, the Central African Republic, Angola, Uganda, South Sudan, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia. The accord is an instrument to address the root causes of instability in the Great Lakes region, and particularly in DRC.
The Security Council of the United Nations demanded that all signatory States implement their commitments in good faith, and encouraged the establishment of an oversight mechanism involving regional leaders, as well as a national mechanism to oversee implementation of reform measures agreed by the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Council expressed its intention to review the status of the Framework Agreement after the first visit to the region by the newly appointed Special Envoy, Mary Robinson.