Security and justice reform in Sierra Leone
A decade of learning revisited
It is a striking feature of current international interventions that state institutions, even if their monopoly over the means of violence has disappeared, if indeed it ever existed, receive by far the most attention – and money. Peacebuilding and state building continue to be considered two sides of the same coin.
In this report Peter Albrecht analyses how Sierra Leone Police (SLP) and broader justice sector reform has been integral to the process of the country’s state-building process since before conflict officially came to an end in January 2002. The report begins with a summary of the political and security context in which SLP reforms began and an overview of key aspects of the Security Sector Reform (SSR) process in Sierra Leone. It then analyses the reform effort specifically, under four broad headings. First, it provides an account of the institutional and political framework within which reforms took place. Second, it reviews a number of technical and operational initiatives undertaken to move reform forward. Third, it reviews institutional reforms to support rebuilding of the SLP. Finally, it addresses broader justice reform efforts that began with initiation of the Justice Sector Development Programme ( JSDP) in 2005 and designed to be continued in the Improved Access to Security and Justice Programme (IASJP), scheduled to begin in 2010.
|An earlier version of this report informed the 2009 report Reforming the Afghan National Police a joint report of the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies (London) and the Foreign Policy Research Institute (Philadelphia). In finalising this report, previous research conducted by the author has also been incorporated, including from the book Security System Transformation in Sierra Leone, 1997-2007.|