The SADC Mediation Reference Group (MRG) successfully completed a refresher training course on Conflict Analysis and Mediation, which was conducted from 8-9 June in Durban, South Africa. The two day refresher course was organized by the SADC Mediation Support Unit, in close collaboration with the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (ACCORD). This is the first joint activity since the Memorandum of Understanding was concluded by SADC Secretariat and ACCORD. The MoU, signed on 22 April 2015, formalises the two organizations’ agreement to work together in support of SADC’s integration Agenda by amongst others:
i) Cooperating in knowledge-sharing and skills transfer in conflict analysis, mediation and conflict mitigation; and also
ii) Prioritizing mediation/negotiation training programmes that aim to prepare police, military and civilians for how to respond to national and regional threats to security.
The two day refresher training was specifically tailored to the MRG’s training needs, and covered issues relating to conflict analysis skills, mediation practice, process and design, as well as facilitation and negotiation skills, using practical, real-life, scenarios, and drawing on the vast practical experiences of the MRG. The training also provided the MRG with an opportunity to exchange ideas and suggestions on ways to identify and address knowledge gaps and constraints, particularly in readiness for deployment. The discussions from the training will also assist the MRG members in their review of the draft Regional Mediation Training Curriculum which will be undertaken on 10 June 2016, also in Durban, South Africa.