Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration of ex-combatants in Côte d’Ivoire

The role of UNOCI in the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration process started being defined in 2004 by United Nations Security Council Resolutions  1528 (2004).  The National DDR Program, which was put into place by the Government, has often been variable in its execution but in the aftermath of the post-electoral crisis in 2011, the Government has seen the Demobilization, Disarmament and Reintegration of ex-combatants as a key factor for the stabilization as well as the political and economic recovery of Côte d’Ivoire. DDR’s responsibility is to ensure that the Ivorian is in accordance with international standards, is credible and supports and promotes dialogue between former belligerent and the structures in charge of the process.
In 2012, following initial verification efforts by the Government, the estimated caseload of ex-combatants has been revised from 110,000 to 74,000, including ex-combatants from both sides, and militias, all of them meeting the eligibility criteria’s set by the United Nations and the Government.  In 2013, the establishment of a verification mechanism to ensure that ex-combatants who present themselves for disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, meet the eligibility criteria and are accounted for in the database, enhanced its quality and reliability.
Under the auspices of the national authority on DDR (ADDR) established in August 2012, some 69,506 ex-combatants including 6,105 women had entered the national program for disarmament, demobilization and reintegration conducted between 2012 and 2015. The quantitative objective of the Government has been reached with 69,506 ex-combatants entering the process over 74,000, which represent a completion rate of disarmament and demobilization of 92%.
Of this total number, 66,216 have been reinserted with the support of ONUCI. The Mission provided technical, logistical and financial support to disarmament, demobilization and reinsertion activities carried out by the ADDR since 2012. This has included provision of technical and logistical support to disarmament and demobilization operations and weapons collections exercises, as well as the provision of financial assistance to cover payments of transitional safety allowances and vocational training to demobilized individuals.
Additional support has covered sensitization activities and community-based reinsertion as well as social cohesion projects. The DDR section has also provided support to the National Commission to Fight against the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (COMNAT-ALPC). Throughout the disarmament process, a total of 43,510 armaments, including 14,121 weapons, were collected, but interlocutors pointed the discrepancy between the number of ex- combatants enrolled and the number of serviceable weapons handed over. Efforts are still needed to ensure continuity of Civilian Disarmament operations in Cote d’Ivoire.