Africa consultant (legal), Accountability Counsel

From Accountability Counsel: Join our team as we expand in the African continent to support communities demanding accountability. Our growing organization seeks an experienced legal professional to serve as our first Africa-based Consultant.


Accountability Counsel is seeking an experienced, Africa-based legal professional to join our growing global team of advocates for justice as we open a new regional presence in Africa. The Africa Consultant will be part of Accountability Counsel’s Communities Program, reporting to the Global Communities Director, and working in close coordination with our advocates in other world regions. The Africa Consultant will offer legal support for communities in Africa harmed by dams, mines, agribusiness, and other projects where abuses include forced displacement, contamination of vital natural resources, sexual abuse, and silencing of affected people.

The position offers the opportunity to grow Accountability Counsel’s caseload, network, team, and impact in the Africa region, and for rapid career growth toward a director-level position within Accountability Counsel. We are seeking someone equally talented at sensitively working with communities at the local level, as they are at effective international-level advocacy.

About Accountability Counsel

Accountability Counsel amplifies the voices of communities around the world to protect their human rights and environment. As advocates for people harmed by internationally financed projects, we employ community driven and policy level strategies to access justice. We envision a world where communities take part in decisions that affect them, and their human and environmental rights are respected.

We accomplish our mission through: assisting communities, at their direction, to use complaint offices tied to international investment as part of broader campaigns for justice; and policy advocacy, ensuring that these complaint offices are independent, accessible, transparent, and fair tools for accountability. We also provide resources such as trainings and tools for communities, host a network of global advocates, and conduct research and track data and trends to foster the global accountability movement. Our work pays particular attention to women, girls and other marginalized groups, who are often the most deeply harmed by abuses.

Our Global Communities, Policy, Research, Communications, and Operations teams collaborate across two offices in North America. We also have a South Asia Communities team, and the Africa Consultant will start our fourth location. We plan to grow other regional offices over time.


A. Communities Program (80%)

Serve as the primary person responsible for implementation of Accountability Counsel’s Communities program in Africa. This entails:

    • Supporting communities to access justice for human rights and environmental violations through coalitions and using a variety of strategies, but with a clear focus on complaint offices at institutions such as the African Development Bank, New Development Bank, World Bank Group, and Overseas Private Investment Corporation, and through the OECD National Contact Points. Specifically:
      • conduct trainings, meetings and workshops with communities, and local and regional advocates on how to trace financing and use complaint offices;
      • at the request of communities, prepare and file formal written complaints regarding human rights and environmental abuses, including conducting factual investigations to document abuses through field investigations, interviews, document reviews, legal and technical analysis, consultation with experts, and other research using a wide variety of methods and sources;
      • support communities in all aspects of the complaint process, in particular by navigating the dispute resolution and compliance review processes associated with complaint offices;
      • advocate for case-specific outcomes at development finance institutions, corporations, government agencies, complaint offices, and other relevant authorities, both directly and in collaboration with other members of Accountability Counsel’s team; and
      • draft other written materials for internal and external use, including letters, memos, blogs and other materials;
    • Collaborating with allies, including attending convenings with local, regional, and international civil society partners on case, research, and policy issues;
    • Communicating regularly with complaint office staff, decision-makers at international institutions, and representatives of private banks and corporations to further organizational goals; and
    • Implementing media and communications strategies related to cases, policy issues, and the organization more broadly.

B. Other (20%)

Additional duties include:

  • Attend regular internal organizational meetings and events;
  • Supervise engagement and management of consultants, law fellows, interns, pro bonoattorneys, and/or law school clinical programs as relates to Accountability Counsel’s Africa Communities Program;
  • Contribute work as part of Accountability Counsel’s communications strategy;
  • Management of local administrative and logistical duties; and
  • Occasional assistance with fundraising.


The Africa Consultant must have the following qualifications:

  • Law degree;
  • Demonstrated commitment to advocating for justice, with at least five (5) years of professional experience in a related field (e.g. human rights, environmental law, corporate accountability);
  • Experience with advocacy in local community settings;
  • Positive attitude, a sense of humor, and excellent interpersonal skills, including a high degree of empathy, patience, and ability to work in a multicultural environment;
  • Excellent written, verbal, analytical, and organizational skills, including ability to review and evaluate highly technical information and/or consult with experts on technical issues related to internationally-financed projects;
  • Ability to work under pressure, organize, and prioritize workload, and meet multiple and often tight deadlines;
  • Ability to take initiative, work independently, use strategic thinking, and execute work efficiently and with exceptional quality;
  • Willingness to travel regularly within Africa and internationally;
  • Experience living and working in Africa, with an existing network and reputation for professionalism tied to that experience; and
  • Fluency in English required, with a strong preference for fluency in French as well.

The following qualifications are highly valued:

  • Proficiency in additional languages such as Swahili, Arabic or other major African languages;
  • Experience working with or for non-governmental organizations; and
  • Knowledge of, or experience with, development finance complaint offices and/or OECD National Contact Points.


The Africa Consultant must be based in Africa with a preference for East or West Africa. Specific location to be determined with top applicant using a variety of considerations.

Compensation and Benefits

Accountability Counsel offers competitive compensation and benefits packages commensurate with experience.

Application Process

To apply, please complete the application form below.

Applications will be received and reviewed until the position is filled. Due to expected high volume of response, only shortlisted applicants will be contacted regarding next steps in the application process.

Estimated Start Date: as soon as possible.

Accountability Counsel is an equal opportunity employer that does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, disability, gender, nationality, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or other prohibited category. We strongly encourage people of color, LGBTQIA+ individuals, people with disabilities, and all qualified persons to apply for this position.

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