2011 - 2016
WHY USAID/OTI WAS IN CÔTE D'IVOIRE
USAID/OTI launched the Côte d’Ivoire Transition Initiative (CITI) program in September 2011 after post-election violence claimed 3,000 lives and displaced hundreds of thousands. The country had made enormous progress in its transition to peace and stability after over 10 years of civil conflict, but it faced a critical test during the October 2015 presidential elections. The elections — the first since the 2010 violence — were peaceful but had the potential to exacerbate enduring tensions around nationality and identity.
USAID/OTI'S ROLE IN CÔTE D'IVOIRE
USAID/OTI’s work in Côte d’Ivoire consisted of two phases. Phase I (September 2011 – August 2014) supported confidence in the post-conflict recovery process through assistance to the re-establishment of the state and its connection with the communities it served. Phase II (June 2014 - March 2016) placed particular emphasis on supporting a peaceful, inclusive and credible electoral process through strengthening electoral institutions, improving access to credible information and increasing intercommunity dialogue. Through addressing community grievances and equipping communities with the tools to access, analyze and share accurate information, USAID/OTI worked to make communities more cohesive and resilient to political manipulation.
CITI worked at the local level in the most volatile areas of the country to address issues that destabilize communities. CITI helped communities and state actors find mutually beneficial solutions to create more resilient communities by:
- Partnering with university students to design and paint murals in two of Abidjan's marginalized neighborhoods to raise awareness of the electoral process and promote peaceful elections. With visually striking images, the murals targeted not fully literate residents at high visibility and high traffic sites.
- Producing a TV series to promote women's participation in the elections.
- Sponsoring a concert to promote a peaceful climate in the highly volatile transport sector ahead of the elections. The popular singer's new single targeted youth and young urban transporters, who were seen as some of the main perpetrators of the 2010-2011 post-electoral violence.