The African Union, constitutionalism and power-sharingThe African Union, constitutionalism and power-sharing
Institute of Development Policy and Management
Development processes, actors and policies
Journal of African law. - London, 1957, currens
57(2013):1, p. 1-28
University of Antwerp
Over the past decade, the African Union has put in place a normative framework to promote constitutional rule and, in particular, orderly constitutional transfers of power in its member states. Its Peace and Security Council opposes unconstitutional changes of government, including through the use of sanctions. The PSC systematically advocates a return to constitutional order, in particular through free and fair elections, as a remedy for unconstitutional changes of government. However, while opposing unconstitutional means of obtaining or transferring power, the AU has been generally supportive of the use of power-sharing agreements as an instrument of negotiated conflict settlement. Most power-sharing agreements do not accord with the prevailing constitutional order. This dual policy, of opposing certain types of unconstitutional change of government while advocating power-sharing agreements, poses an obvious challenge for the consistency of AU policy.