The Office of the Special Adviser on Africa (OSAA) aims to enhance international support for Africa's development and security through its advocacy and analytical work, assist the Secretary-General in improving coherence and coordination of the UN System support to Africa, facilitate inter-governmental deliberations on Africa at the global level, in particular relating to the New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) and establish a monitoring mechanism to review commitments made towards Africa’s development.

This mandate is summarized in OSAA’s four key functional roles, namely:  i) Advisory, ii) Advocacy, iii) Coordination and iv) Monitoring. These four functional roles guide the Office’s programmes.