LEAD Security Structures
A Leadership and Conflict Management (LEAD) workshop was held in Centurion, South Africa at the Protea Marriot Hotel from 10 of September until 15 September, 2018. This 5-day LEAD training of trainers is part of national project, funded by the European Union. The PEV RSA project (www.democracy-support.eu/southafrica) is 24 months (2018/20) and is implemented by the European Centre for Electoral Support in partnership with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) (www.democracy-support.eu/southafrica).
The opening ceremony had speeches from the dedicated Project Coordinator, Victoria Florinder (ECES) and European Union Delegation Emmanuel Iglesias Roa, Section team leader for governance, social sectors, and culture, while Margaret Makhuane, project manager for the EU was also present. The European Union expressed strong support to these kinds of initiatives and will continue to be a strong ally for all of those who are committed to dialogue and seek understanding across organizational or party lines.
Participants came from various security structures in South Africa. Represented in the room were members from the South African Police Force HQ, as well as SAPS leaders from across the country and members of the State Security Agency and the National Defese Force, and civil society for the training of police forces.
This is the second LEAD training, following a training in Johannesburg held in June 2018 and is part of the PEV RSA projects stakeholder engagement component.
The curriculum on Leadership and Dialogue was crafted by ECES in partnership with Centre for Creative Leadership, CCL. CCL is based the US and delivers high-end executive education for world leaders. Such trainings are usually very costly and require far more time than what one usually can afford. The partnership between CCL and ECES emerged to make leadership training accessible and affordable for electoral stakeholders.
Leadership training blended with dialogue techniques has so far proven to be a winning concept. Leadership, both for the individual and organizational level, are essential components of electoral processes.
The LEAD workshop in Centurion was meant to explore various ways how exchange between stakeholders of difference of opinion, beliefs or ideologies can be carried out almost conflict-free by making use of technical skills.
In sum then, this workshop in Centurion was a forum whereby members of security structures who engage with the electoral process can further develop skills in leadership and dialogue and make use of the very fact that participants come from different backgrounds to bring out as many perspectives are possible on how to succeed with dialogue.
The workshop is being facilitated by Zefanias Matsimbe, Senior Lecturer at Eduardo Mondiane University and a senior expert at EISA, Rindai Chipfunde-Vava, Host Director of the Election Support Network of Southern Africa and Executive Director of Zimbabwe Election Support Network and lastly, Victoria Florinder, Senior Conflict Management Advisor and Project Coordinator, ECES.