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Amnesty International

Regional Director – West and Central Africa

About Amnesty International

Amnesty’s aim is simple: an end to human rights abuses. Independent, international and influential, Amnesty campaigns for justice, freedom and truth wherever they’re denied. Already their network of over three million members and supporters is making a difference in 150 countries. And whether applying pressure through powerful research or direct lobbying, mass demonstrations or online campaigning, it’s people are all inspired by hope for a better world. One where human rights are respected and protected by everyone, everywhere.

International Secretariat Purpose

The International Secretariat, which operates from a number of sites around the world, gathers and communicates accurate and action-oriented human rights information globally. It campaigns for meaningful human rights change; enable effective human rights activism and work to persuade governments and other actors to uphold universal human rights standards. The International Secretariat provides strategic leadership, support and advice to the Amnesty International movement globally, fostering Amnesty International’s contribution, presence and public accountability throughout the world.

Working Relationships

Directorate: Global Operations

Programme: Dakar Hub Office

Reporting to: Senior Director, Global Operations

Posts that this job manages: Office staff, including: Researchers, Campaigners, Media/Communications, Movement Building, support staff, other senior advisers, volunteers and/or consultants as appropriate.

Role Purpose

Responsible for leading and overseeing the establishment and management of the Dakar hub in order to deliver a high capacity International Secretariat presence. You will be responsible for managing an integrated human rights team delivering impact for the countries that exist within the region, in line with globally agreed strategies and priorities, and in collaboration with other key stakeholders at the International Secretariat and the Amnesty International movement. You will be responsible for leading the development and implementation of integrated strategies to deliver human rights impact in, on and across relevant countries in the region, ensuring they are coherent with globally agreed strategies and priorities and undertaken in collaboration with other key stakeholders within and outside Amnesty International. As part of achieving this you will also be responsible for ensuring the integrated working of a multi-functional office delivering on effective research, campaigning, communication, movement building, growth, fundraising and key relationship building strategies. As a member of the Amnesty International Management Team you will actively participate in the leadership, management and development of the International Secretariat.

Main Responsibilities

Leadership and Management

  • Lead the establishment, and oversee the management, of the Dakar hub;
  • Contribute to the development of human rights strategies at the regional level
  • Lead development and effective implementation of a human rights plan of action for the sub-region and the various countries within the remit, including research, communications and fundraising, and in line with globally agreed priorities and ensure alignment between sub-regional and regional priorities
  • Scan the external world for opportunities and threats, maintain an overview of legal, political, human rights and other relevant developments within the sub-region
  • Recruit and manage staff of the Dakar hub, including those working remotely and ensure performance is managed and talent is nurtured
  • Establish and promote an organizational culture of integration across Programmes and manage the effective integration of relevant staff from the International Secretariat and other offices to the Dakar hub
  • Play a key role within the regional advisory group, which will be chaired by the Regional Research and Advocacy Director, and will include relevant Section/Structure Directors, key regional hub staff and external advisors and partners as appropriate
  • Enhance Amnesty International’s profile and presence in the region through the hub’s research and campaigning and related innovative strategies, and by representing Amnesty International/undertaking other advocacy as appropriate before various forums in the region and elsewhere as appropriate
  • Lead on promoting sub-regional cohesion by engaging with all Amnesty International entities in the sub-region and promoting adherence to globally agreed standards and priorities
  • Ensure that the values, standards, priorities of Amnesty International are instilled and adhered to
  • Deputize as agreed, for the Senior Director

Quality Assurance and Reporting

  • Ensure compliance with globally developed quality assurance and impact assessment methodologies to ensure consistency and impartiality and measure human rights impact within the region
  • Ensure that the team report with sufficient clarity and detail on the impact of their work, including to funders
  • Ensure the timely delivery of agreed plans
  • Be accountable for all outputs from the Dakar hub in line with globally agreed standards, including research, law and policy standards

Finance and Risk Management

  • Determine the strategic allocation of the hub’s resources
  • Ensure the regional hub’s compliance with relevant laws, policies and practices and ensure best practice, including good financial management and regular financial audits as required
  • Set, monitor, manage and report on budget and expenditure for the Dakar hub across all areas pertaining to the hub’s functioning, ensuring the office has strong financial controls
  • Accountable for duty of care of staff, including where necessary, development of internal security, health and safety and human resources polices and standards
  • This is not an exhaustive list of duties. The need for flexibility is required and the post holder is expected to carry out any other related duties that are within the employee’s skills and capabilities whenever reasonably instructed.


Knowledge and experience

  • No formal qualifications are required, though many candidates would be expected to have Masters, doctorates and law degrees. For this kind of research and human rights work there is no one path to excellence; highly-seasoned experience is more important
  • Demonstrated knowledge and experience of the human rights and political context in the region and an expert understanding of the international human rights legal framework, and relevant regional and national legal frameworks, with substantial experience applying human rights research analysis and campaigning for human rights change
  • Experience of working in a key leadership role in a complex organization ideally based outside the organization’s global head office and preferably with experience of maintaining a successful operation during times of organizational change and matrix managing a cross-functional and multi-cultural team, coaching them toward a new way of working
  • Demonstrated experience and capability as a leader who can influence the direction of Amnesty International’s impact within the region, including by identifying and accessing the most effective channels for advocacy, and who maintains an active network of contacts in governments, NGOs and the media locally;
  • Demonstrated experience of dealing with media in West Africa
  • Experience of living and working in the region required


  • Strategic thinker with a developed capacity to build and convey the “big picture” while enabling others to identify the implications of this for their daily work
  • Demonstrated ability to inspire and motivate others; guiding delivery under pressure while building collaboration and cooperation
  • Well-developed communication, presentation, spokesperson, advocacy and representational skills appropriate for diverse audiences, donors and the media, including the ability to make effective arguments
  • Demonstrated willingness to be accountable and to receive and give performance related feedback
  • Ability to lead and manage staff and financial resources including setting, managing and monitoring plans and budgets
  • Proven ability to work under pressure including the ability to cope with deadlines, multiple tasks, and competing demands
  • Excellent political judgment
  • Written and verbal fluency in English and French essential; and desirable in a relevant local language
  • Able to work in a manner that is consistent with the organization’s core behaviours and competencies.

Personal style and attributes

  • Personally credible, with a professional demeanor that generates the trust and confidence of managers, staff and external stakeholders
  • Leads by example and possesses a high degree of integrity
  • Possesses a high level of resilience and drive, able to be flexible and change orientation as required and have ability to work in an ambiguous environment
  • Sets themselves and others challenging but achievable targets
  • Challenges and confronts conflict, brokering solutions in order to achieve goals
  • Looks to the future – is able to see links and opportunities that others might miss
  • Uses new approaches, theory and technologies to develop innovative service solutions
  • Applies concepts and learning from outside own field/environment, looking ahead over the long-term to deliver improvements and avoid problems
  • Ability to engage and influence, utilizing a challenging but respectful approach
  • Personally engaged with human rights and social justice
  • Ability to use participatory approaches and methodologies when working with AI staff, young people and others

Equality Statement

Equality and diversity is at the core of Amnesty International’s values and staff are expected to work collectively and individually to promote a constructive and sensitive approach to others from a variety of backgrounds, where the work of others is valued and respected.

Conflict of Interest

Public or other activity, affiliation to or support for any group or organization, personal association or other factor which may generate a real or perceived conflict of interest with Amnesty International’s principles (specifically independence and impartiality), or raise a security concern, or otherwise prevent the candidate from carrying out key functions of the specific post and would disqualify the candidate from being appointed.