As a special political mission, one of UNOCA's priorities is to strengthen the capacity of regional and sub-regional organizations for conflict prevention, peacebuilding and peaceful resolution of disputes. To this end, acting under Chapter VI of the United Nations Charter, UNOCA encourages the "parties to any dispute, the continuance of which is likely to endanger the maintenance of international peace and security, [to], first of all, seek a solution by negotiation, enquiry, mediation, conciliation, arbitration, judicial settlement, resort to regional agencies or arrangements, or other peaceful means of their own choice".
On that basis, in accordance with her/his mandate, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Central Africa consults regularly with many actors of the socio-political life in the sub-region. One of her/his missions is to provide, on behalf of the Secretary-General, good offices. In this context, she/he can draw upon her/his independence, impartiality and integrity to undertake both private and public initiatives or develop appropriate mechanisms to prevent the eruption of crises, limit the scope of crises that have already erupted or prevent an existing dispute from turning into an open conflict. The Special Representative initiates diplomatic and political actions in the countries concerned to encourage various stakeholders to engage in dialogue in order to find concerted and lasting solutions to their problems.
UNOCA organized capacity-building sessions for Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) to help its staff develop skills in these areas. The ECCAS experts testify that this assistance was very useful in managing the crisis in the Central African Republic, where several trained staff members were deployed after the coup d'état of 24 March 2013. The Special Representative represented the United Nations in international mediation on this crisis.
Biannually, the Special Representative presents to the Security Council a report of the UN Secretary-General on the activities of UNOCA. The report highlights actions of preventive diplomacy to address challenges to peace and security in Central Africa.