United Nations Peace Keeping Force and Sexual Exploitations in Africa: Implications for the United Nations

Adejoh Sunday


Conflict, wars and political instability that characterised the international system and the need for international peace and security is the central idea behind the formation of the United Nations as an international institutional framework that will guarantee global peace and security. Since its establishment in 1945 the United Nations has recorded remarkable achievements in the area of peace keeping, conflict resolution /management through the instrumentality of her peace keeping missions in different part of the globe and Africa in particular. Post-colonial Africa has been characterised by all forms of political instabilities precipitated by the internal contradictions within the continent and further manifested in the forms of ethno-religious crisis, militancy, terrorism, electoral violence etc. these situations has made  UN intervention inevitable. However, in the recent past the involvement of UN Peace Keepers in Sexual abuse and exploitations in Central African Republic, Darfur, Mali, Liberia, and Sierra Leone etc. poses a lot of threat to the credibility of the UN. It is based on this that this paper attempts an investigation into the involvement of UN Peace Keeper in sexual exploitation and the relationship between peace keeping and sexual abuses with a view to ascertaining the factors that instigates peace keeper into sexual exploitations and the factors that also exposes people to sexual exploitation. Bearing in mind the nature of the research problem, this paper employed both the Organski’s collective security theory and Abraham Maslow’s theory of needs to examine both the political and psychological dimensions of the phenomenon. It is the position of this paper that the participation of UN Peace Keepers in sexual exploitation is a deviant behaviour and it undermines the credibility that the UN is known for. The paper also recommends among others the need for the UN to empower host countries to punish perpetuators of sexual exploitations.

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