11.8.2020 : 12:24 : +0200

General Information | Point of Contact | PoA initiatives & activites | Instruments & documents | Members


Regional Centre on Small Arms in the Great
Lakes Region, the Horn of Africa and Bordering States (RECSA)


Nairobi, Kenya

Web site

Short description

RECSA’s principle objective is to ensure the efficient and effective implementation of the Nairobi Declaration and Nairobi Protocol, which relate to the prevention, control, and reduction of illicit small arms.


Most of RECSA’s funding comes from external donors, in particular (but not limited to) the EU, Japan, and the United States. For the year ending June 2010 RECSA members contributed
less than 3 per cent of the organization’s operating funds, with most dues-paying members being in arrears.

RECSA, created in 2005, has its origins with the Nairobi Declaration of March 2000, and the Nairobi Secretariat was created to assist its ten signatories to attain their objectives. Five countries have since joined: Seychelles (2004), Somalia (2005), Congo (2009), CAR (2011), and South Sudan (2011).


15 members (all are UN member states)

  • Current members*: Burundi, CAR, Congo, DRC, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda  (Bold: founding member, Grey: suspended member)
  • Former members: None
  • Membership pending: None

Overlapping memberships with other ROs

RECSA members represent:

  • 10 of 19 COMESA members (CAR, Congo, Somalia, South Sudan, and Tanzania are not
    COMESA members)
  • 5 of 5 EAC members 12 of 12 EAPCCO members
  • 9 of 11 ICGLR members (Angola and Zambia are not RECSA members)
  • 8 of 8 IGAD members

* Information accurate as of 16 May 2012

PoA Point of Contact

  • Barbara Munube
  • Head of Legal Affairs


PoA-related activities

In March 2000 ten RECSA founding members signed the Nairobi Declaration to address the problems associated with the illicit trade in small arms in their region. In April 2004 these countries, together with the Seychelles, supplemented this political document with a legally binding document known as the Nairobi Protocol (which entered into force in May 2006). The Nairobi Declaration and Nairobi Protocol cover many of the same objectives covered within the PoA and several RECSA members’ NFPs also serve as NFPs for the PoA.
Although the Nairobi Protocol does not specifically call for national action plans, RECSA has assisted numerous members to develop them (as part of its wide-ranging Best Practice Guidelines) to help meet their commitments under both the Nairobi Protocol and the PoA. It has also convened a series of regional meetings (2005–09) to help its members harmonize their national small arms legislation with the objectives laid out under the Nairobi Protocol. RECSA has convened regional meetings to help counter the threat from MANPADS proliferation (in 2008) and to develop members’ capacity to control small-arms-brokering activities (in 2009). Moreover, RECSA has raised funds to procure machines to mark members’ small arms and trained members in how to use them. RECSA has routinely created space for civil society organizations to share their expertise with government officials.

PoA-related programmes and initiatives

PoA-relevant cooperation with other ROs

RECSA’s cooperation with other ROs is far ranging and long-standing. For example, it has provided marking machines and training on their use to the three ICGLR members that at the time were not RECSA members (although two have now joined RECSA). It has also shared lessons learned in this area with ECOWAS, the OAS, and SADC, and has provided machines to four ECOWAS members.

Legally binding regional instruments

  • Nairobi Protocol for the Prevention, Control and Reduction of Small Arms and Light Weapons in the Great Lakes Region and the Horn of Africa and Bordering States (2004)

Other official documents of interest

  • Nairobi Declaration on the Problem of the Proliferation of Illicit Small Arms and Light Weapons in the Great Lakes Region and the Horn of Africa (2000)
  • Best Practice Guidelines on the Implementation of the Nairobi Declaration and Nairobi Protocol (2005); Regional Harmonization of Legislation on Firearms and Ammunition (2005); and Practical Disarmament (2011)


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