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Compliance Officer, BIRM


Abidjan, CI

  • Grade : PL4 
  • Position No. : 50072229 
  • Posting Date: 07/04/2024 
  • Closing Date : 08/03/2024 





Established in 1964, the African Development Bank (AfDB) is the premier pan-African development institution, promoting economic growth and social progress across the continent. There are 81 member states, including 54 in Africa (Regional Member Countries). The Bank’s development agenda is delivering the financial and technical support for transformative projects that will significantly reduce poverty through inclusive and sustainable economic growth. In order to sharply focus the objectives of the Ten Year Strategy (2024 – 2033) and ensure greater developmental impact, five major areas (High 5s), all of which will accelerate our delivery for Africa, have been identified for scaling up, namely Light up and Power Africa; Feed Africa; Industrialize Africa; Integrate Africa; and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.



The Board of Directors provides oversight and strategic direction to the African Development Bank Group. It is composed of Executive Directors who are representatives of the African Development Bank member countries. Specifically the Board is responsible for the conduct of the general operations of the Bank, and carries out the following functions: (1) determine the general structure of the Bank’s services; (2) approve the financing policy and take decisions concerning loans, guarantees, equity investments and fund loans by the Bank; (3) determine the interest rates of loans and guarantee commissions; (4) approve the Bank’s operations program and administrative budget; (5) prepare the work of the Board of Governors; and (6) submit accounts and annual reports, as well as the administrative budgets for the approval of the Board of Governors. The Board does its work through a series of permanent Committees that review and discuss policy and program documents and make appropriate recommendations to the whole Board. The Independent Development Evaluation (IDEV); Independent Recourse Mechanism (BIRM); Secretariat to the Sanctions Appeals Board (BSAB); Administrative Tribunal (BATR) report to the Board.




The Independent Recourse Mechanism (IRM) is the Bank’s independent accountability mechanism and aims to provide fair, independent and effective recourse and remedy to individuals, workers and communities who are adversely impacted by AfDB-funded projects. It also seeks to identify potential areas via the complaints-handling process where the Bank can further strengthen its policies, procedures and/or practices in support of sustainable development, ensuring that “no one is left behind”. 


The IRM is responsible for handling complaints from external stakeholders and investigating the Bank’s compliance with its own policies and procedures related to its operations. These policies include, but are not limited to, the Bank’s Disclosure and Access to Information Policy and the Integrated Safeguards System.


The IRM’s administrative set up and functions are governed by the IRM Enabling Resolution and Operating Rules and Procedures which were initially approved by the AfDB’s Boards of Directors in June 2006 and have been revised four times since. The current IRM Enabling Resolution and Operating Rules and Procedures have been in effect since June 2021.


The IRM has three main functions: compliance review (investigation), problem-solving (mediation) and an advisory function. The IRM also carries out outreach, capacity building and knowledge management activities. The compliance review and the problem-solving are stakeholder-focused and their purpose is mainly to redress harm caused to people or the environment as well as to bring a project which is subject to a complaint into compliance with the applicable Bank Group policies and procedures. The advisory function is institutionally focused and aims at enhancing institutional learning across the organizational structure of the Bank. The IRM also carries out outreach activities, which focus on enhancing the visibility of the IRM among people affected by projects (PAPs), government institutions, projects implementation units (PIUs) and civil society organizations (CSOs).




The Principal Accountability/Compliance Officer is a professional in the unit who provides support to the IRM, in all matters pertaining to the fulfillment of its mission, and the complaints handling process in particular (primarily participating in compliance review cases but also dealing with problem solving/dispute resolution cases when needed).



Under the supervision of the Director of the IRM, the duties and responsibilities of the Principal Compliance Officer includes:    


Compliance Reviews (Investigations)


  1. Assess complaints received by IRM and assigned to the officer to determine if they pose retaliation risks (which can then be addressed) and meet the criteria to be registered for Compliance review. Once registered, consolidate all project records for drafting and distribution of notice of registration of request to the Complainants, Management and the Boards of Directors.
  2. Liaise with stakeholders including Complainants and Management to verify any issues raised by their response(s) to the issues of the complaint and integrate their views in the complaint eligibility assessment draft report and the final eligibility report to be submitted to the Boards of Directors.
  3. Coordinate and participate in IRM compliance review missions assigned by IRM Director, carry out desk reviews and interviews with all relevant stakeholders, and consolidate the key findings of these missions along with the IRM recommendations in compliance review reports to be submitted to IRM Director for approval prior to the Boards of Directors for consideration.
  4. Provide opinions to IRM Director on policy interpretations when requested and participate in consultations to help Management prepare its remedial action plans based on the recommendations made by the IRM.
  5. Coordinate annual IRM monitoring of implementation of Management Action Plans approved by the Boards of Directors assigned to the officer, including review of these plans, preparing draft monitoring reports, participating in monitoring missions when needed, substantively contributing to the submission of these monitoring reports to the Boards of Directors.
  6. Liaise with Management and other stakeholders in handling compliance review and monitoring activities.
  7. Coordinate with the Problem-solving Officer in all matters pertaining to conversion of a complaint from problem-solving into compliance review and/or handling complaints registered for both compliance review and problem solving.
  8. Liaise with IRM Complaints Registrar to regularly update the IRM Register of Complaints for cases handled through compliance review and all other related compliance activities organized inside and outside the Bank.
  9. Provide support to the Director in the selection, procurement and contracting of consultants.
  10. Provide technical support to the Director in all matters pertaining to the IRM activities from planning, assessment, conceptualization to reporting and monitoring.
  11. Liaise with the IRM Outreach, Communication and Knowledge Management Officer to disseminate timely updated information on compliance review processes and reports.
  12. Prepare comprehensive eligibility assessment reports and compliance review reports.
  13. Liaise with other Independent Accountability Mechanisms (IAMs) when complaints being handled by IRM relate to co-financed projects for which the IAM of the co-financing institution has received a similar complaint.
  14. Ensure communications with the complainants and other relevant stakeholders throughout the complaints-handling process.
  15. Support the development and maintenance of a database of technical experts, consultants, interpreters or facilitators who can be called upon by the IRM in its work.
  16. Supervise the work of staff, consultants, interns, and other short-term staff designated to work on compliance reviews cases.   


Problem-Solving / Mediation / Dispute Resolution


  1. Provide technical assistance and support to problem-solving cases undertaken by the IRM on an ‘as-needed’ basis (including providing analysis and advice on safeguards and international norms), preparing technical support (i.e. interpretation of safeguards, etc.), participation in missions, and preparing eligibility assessment drafts, etc when needed.   


Implementation of IRM’s Work Program


  1. Provide input and help in the development of the annual work program and the drafting of IRM’s annual Accountability Report.
  2. Track elements of the work program that fall under the remit of the complaints-handling functions to ensure on-going and adequate progress on the workplan and identify any slippages or problematic areas. ​​​​​​​  


Outreach and Knowledge Management


  1. Liaise with the IRM’s Outreach, Communication and Knowledge Management Officer in all activities relating to preparation of publications and other multi-media products, on cases assigned to the officer.
  2. Present the complaints-handling functions and/or case studies during IRM outreach activities when requested by the IRM Director.
  3. Draft relevant communication products such as blog articles, social media posts and case studies for IRM website, newsletters or social media platforms.
  4. Draft relevant sections on compliance reviews and compliance review cases in the IRM annual reports including lessons and emerging trends from complaints-handling cases.    


IRM Policy Reviews 


  1. Contribute to overall amendments of IRM rules and procedures during the quadrennial mandatory reviews of the IRM including the rules and procedures relating to the operationalization of IRM’s complaint-handling processes.
  2. Draft and provide technical advice in formulation of IRM internal guidelines.
  3. Represent IRM in taskforces assigned to update relevant policies guidelines of the Bank. ​​​​​​​ 


General Support Role


  1. Support compliance reviews, advisory, problem-solving, outreach, capacity building, and knowledge management activities.
  2. Support the IRM’s Case Management Officer to prepare Notices of Registration of Requests/Complaints for publication on IRM’s public registry.
  3. Establish and maintain relevant standard operating procedures and workflows.
  4. Draft and provide technical advice in formulation of IRM internal templates, guidelines.
  5. Provide meaningful feedback and advice to colleagues on various written texts, presentations, etc.


COMPETENCIES (skills, experience and knowledge)


  1. Holds at least a master’s degree in law, Economics, Environmental Law, International Development, Business Studies, Operations Research or related fields.
  2. A minimum of 6 years of relevant and progressive professional experience in compliance, development work, non-financial audit/assurance, or other related fields and suitable experience carrying out research particularly on topics of: environment, social, involuntary resettlement, economics, human rights in public and/or private sector fields in developing countries, preferably in Africa.
  3. Previous experience with independent accountability mechanism or similar types of roles including non-financial auditing, investigations, compliance functions, management system audits, arbitration, mediation, monitoring and evaluation, social and environmental impact assessment, etc
  4. Excellent knowledge of development institution’s policies, guidelines and procedures.
  5. Excellent operations experience within multilateral development institutions, preferably on both public and private sector operations.
  6. Superior leadership qualities, technical excellence and first-rate interpersonal and follow-up skills.
  7. Strong analytical and strategic capabilities.
  8. Demonstrated ability to produce high quality work on a variety of issues with very short deadlines, to take prudent risks and make effective and timely decisions.
  9. Solid experience in providing advisory or technical opinions on matters associated with international development projects and programs.
  10. Good understanding of the key trends in social and environmental impacts and accountability.
  11. Ability to develop articulate and well researched arguments in communications and reports
  12. Ability to analyse and synthesize lessons learned, emerging trends, issues, and systemic concerns in development activities and report on them.
  13. Ability to identify and report on pitfalls and risks inherent in the design and implementation of development projects and programs particular on social and environmental issues, and interpreting them based on the applicable policies and procedures.
  14. Capable and methodical reasoning and ability to convince others when there are differences of opinion.
  15. Outstanding analytical and advisory skills to deliver impactful recommendations.
  16. Ability to establish and maintain productive relationships with stakeholders by gaining their trust and respect through quality work and responsive engagement.
  17. Ability to deal with confidential and sensitive issues in complex institutional settings in a multi-cultural environment.
  18. Ability to supervise projects, teams and coordinate complex multi-tasks assignments.
  19. Ability to communicate effectively (written and oral) in English or French, preferably with a working knowledge of the other language.
  20. Competence in the use of standard Microsoft Office Suite applications (Word, Excel, Access and Power Point); knowledge of integrated document management system and/or quantitative and qualitative data analysis packages is an added advantage.




Applicants who fully meet the Bank's requirements and are considered for further assessment will be contacted. Applicants should submit a concise Curriculum Vitae (CV) and any additional documents that may be stated as required. The President of the African Development Bank reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level.  The African Development Bank is an equal opportunities employer. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.


The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) does not ask for payments of any kind from applicants throughout the recruitment process (job application, CV review, interview meeting, and final processing of applications). In addition, the Bank does not request information on applicants’ bank accounts. The African Development Bank Group declines all responsibility for the fraudulent publications of job offers in its name or, in general, for the fraudulent use of its name in any way whatsoever 


“Please note that the Bank does not accept dual nationality. Therefore, you are required to declare the nationality you would like to be considered by the Bank throughout your career, if hired. Please upload supporting Government issued IDs such as passport, National Identity Card or Certificate etc.”

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