In the run up to Sierra Leone’s general and presidential elections, which are about to take place in June 2023, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Sierra Leone requested Clingendael Academy to provide two three-day trainings on Negotiation and Consensus Building Skills for political youth leaders in Sierra Leone. The trainings took place from January 24th to February 1st 2023 in the country’s capital Freetown, and follow previous trainings provided by Clingendael in Sierra Leone in 2021 and 2022.
Clingendael Academy worked closely together with UNDP and the Political Party Regulation Commission (PPRC) in the organisation of the trainings. Participants were nominated by PPRC and represented the youth wings of the seventeen political parties of Sierra Leone. By engaging in simulations, role-plays, discussions and other exercises, participants across the political spectrum worked together and consequently boosted mutual understanding. Moreover, the 51 participating youth leaders strengthened their negotiation and consensus-building skills, which contributes to their ambitions in advancing inter- and intra-party dialogue. The trainings further included lively discussions and knowledge-sharing on youth inclusivity and participation throughout the electoral cycle.
It is envisioned that the youth leaders will share their newly acquired skills and cascade lessons learned to other young people in Sierra Leone, ultimately contributing to peaceful, inclusive & credible elections. One of the participants mentioned:
The training helped me to learn new skills in negotiation and the trainers created an atmosphere of tolerance between the colleagues from across political parties
Clingendael Academy will continue its cooperation with UNDP Sierra Leone and the PPRC, starting with another training series in March 2023 on Negotiation and Consensus Building skills, this time for the Women Leaders of the political parties of Sierra Leone.
Read more about the training on the UNDP website on Sierra Leone.