The Panel was moderated by Dr. Aboubacar Fall, Managing Partner, AF Legal Law Firm and former Chairman of the ALSF Management Board. The distinguished panelists were:
i. Mr. Rugeri Nkusi Christian, Treasury Counsel, Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, Rwanda, and member of Governing Council;
ii. Ms. Eva Jhala, ALSF Management Board Member; and
iii. Mr. Bruce Montador, ALSF Management Board Member.
The panelists observed that the ALSF is a unique African institution and central to the importance of the rule law in developing and transforming Africa. Currently, the ALSF is mainly financed by the AfDB and other development partners. To sustainably finance its activities, the ALSF in collaboration with the RMCs, will have to find innovative ways of sustainably broadening the resource base of the institution, and where possible reduce costs of implementing its projects.
To do so, RMCs will need to financially contribute to support the ALSF activities. To raise additional funds, the RMCs may consider making direct contributions to the ALSF; co-finance some of the ALSF projects; pay a fee on successful negotiations and pay fees for the training received. Guided by its operational guidelines, the ALSF could also encourage the private sector/philanthropic foundations to contribution to support its work.
To reduce the cost of ALSF operations, African countries will also need to build capacities both for states and relevant national institutions to provide quality control of the Facility’s work; and ALSF should consider collaborating with African Universities or Training institutions to equip Africa lawyers with the requisite skills to negotiate complex commercial transactions and other ALSF priority areas of intervention in the long-term.
The panelists noted that it will be vital for the ALSF to work closely with RMCs to identify and implement innovative ways to broaden its sources of funding. Below are some of the recommendations by the Panel: 10
- RMCs should pay fees on successful projects;
- RMCs should pay fees for training their respective government officials;
- ALSF should further deepen its relationship with AfDB to be considered for support during the Bank’s African Development Fund Replenishment cycles; and
- ALSF should partner with African Training Institutions/Universities to equip the students with the requisite skills in the focus areas of intervention of the ALSF.