Occasional Paper

Is the Global Compact on Refugees fit for Africa’s Purposes?

The Global Compact for Refugees (GCR) advocates a ‘whole of society’ approach to resolving and managing the forced displacement ‘crisis’ by setting out specific targets, objectives and pathways for UN member states to follow. Its novelty lies in the conjoining of actors, operationalisation of refugee protections, and linkage of migration with development. Africa is host to the largest internally displaced population in the world, and to over half of the most violent conflicts globally. It is a source, site and destination of forced displacement. The GCR, through the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) and support platforms, offers a potential paradigm shift for African states hosting
large-scale displaced populations, as it mobilises coordinated multi-stakeholder action, underpinned by direct fiscal resourcing. However, securing unencumbered fiscal resources is a key challenge for the GCR and will determine the success of a ‘results-orientated’ and ‘evidence-based’ CRRF. Similarly, the success of the GCR will be determined by its ability in getting states to uphold their commitments.