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South Africa: Legal Consultant

NGO/UN Job Vacancy

Organization: African Risk Capacity
Country: South Africa
Closing date: 17 Nov 2017

Under the supervision of the Legal Counsel of the African Risk Capacity Specialized Agency of the African Union (ARC Agency), the Legal Consultant will: 1. Review and provide feedback on memoranda of understanding, procurement contracts and other agreements; 2. Support governance activities of ARC Agency; 3. Support the launch of new initiatives; and 4. Ensure high quality and accurate French translations of legal documentation are available. The terms of reference for this work are laid out below.


African Risk Capacity Agency (ARC Agency) is a Specialised Agency of the African Union (AU). ARC Agency leads the ARC Group, a development finance institution that provides financial tools and infrastructure to help countries manage natural disaster risk and adapt to climate change. It currently counts 32 AU countries as members and is supervised by a governing board of African ministers and experts. The ARC design and establishment phase was managed by the World Food Programme of the United Nations (WFP) and WFP continues to provide administrative services support to ARC Agency through an administrative services agreement.

In 2014, ARC launched its initial risk insurance product for member states through its financial affiliate, African Risk Capacity Insurance Company Limited (ARC Ltd). ARC Ltd is a specialist hybrid mutual insurance company and Africa’s first ever disaster insurance pool, aggregating risk by issuing insurance policies to participating governments and transferring risk to the international market.

In May 2014, ARC Ltd issued drought insurance policies totalling USD 129 million for a total premium cost of USD 17 million to a first group of African governments – Kenya, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal – marking the launch of the inaugural ARC pool. Five additional countries joined the next pool in May 2015 for a total sum insured of USD 190m and a total premium of USD 26 million. ARC has a target to reach up to 30 countries with drought, flood and cyclone coverage totalling up to USD 1.5 billion in sum insured by 2020.

The ARC Secretariat has been established to support capacity building in ARC member states, liaise with ARC Ltd, and support the Conference of the Parties as well as the ARC Agency Governing Board. Between now and May 2018, the Secretariat will strive to achieve the following milestones:

  1. Finalize ARC's 5th insurance pool and form the 6th insurance pool;
  2. Launch the technical component of the Outbreak and Epidemics (O&E) Pilot
  3. Launch the Replica Pilot
  4. Continue the institutionalization of ARC’s functions and effective governance

The Legal Consultant will assist in achieving all 4 milestones.


Reporting to the Legal Counsel of the ARC Agency and the Director General, the Legal Consultant responsibilities will include the following:

General Responsibilities:

  • Assist with drafting legal opinions, reports, memoranda and other correspondence in French and English;
  • Assist with drafting and/or reviewing agreements and contracts;
  • Research and provide advice on various legal issues under international law;
  • Provide legal interpretations and advise on a full range of issues regarding the ARC Agency and WFP’s various regulations, rules and policies, including the ARC Treaty and other founding documents, WFP rules and regulations, and other basic texts;
  • Duty Travel as required;
  • Other duties as directed by senior ARC staff.

ARC Specific Responsibilities:

  • Review and provide feedback on memoranda of understanding, procurement contracts and other legal agreements;
  • Support the development of policies and procedures for the ARC Agency and the ARC Secretariat to operationalize the functions of the Agency and set standards of good governance;
  • Provide legal support to ARC Agency Governing Board and its committees, and the Conference of the Parties, including helping to organize meetings of those bodies;
  • Liaise with Governments regarding ARC in French and assist with the interpretation of legal instruments in French, in coordination with the Country Engagement Managers.
  • Maintain the legal archives of ARC Agency;
  • Serve as a liaison between the ARC Legal Counsel and the ARC office in Johannesburg;
  • Support the launch of new initiatives, as requested by senior staff;
  • Manage the translation of legal documentation into French, Arabic and Portuguese;

Competencies: Action Management, Behavioural Flexibility, Client Orientation, Cognitive Capacity, Communication, Ethics and Values, Interpersonal Relations, Partnering, Stamina and Stress Resistance and Teamwork

Results Expected: Articulate and concise thinking. Timely and thorough written analysis of legal issues on matters pertaining to commercial, international and constitutional law. This includes extensive research on all legal matters in the aforementioned areas. Clear and concise drafting of original documents of a commercial and international legal nature.

Critical Success Factors: Ability to work under own initiative; tact, and persuasiveness; ability to work harmoniously with people of different national and cultural backgrounds; demonstrated problem solving skills; ability to conceptualise issues and analyse data.

Essential Qualifications

  • Education: Advanced university degree in the discipline of law or university degree in the discipline of law with experience and advanced training in private commercial and/or public international law. Candidate must be qualified to practice law or admitted to practice by a recognized national or state bar or law society.

  • Experience: At least 3 years of postgraduate progressively responsible professional experience as a legal advisor/officer, both nationally and in an international organization (preferably the UN or a UN system organization) and strong practical legal experience.

  • Language: Working knowledge (proficiency/Level C) of English and French.

Nationals of ARC Member states are encouraged to apply. This role is based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and this position is a short term contract for a period of 6 months, with scope for extension.

How to apply:

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