Saturday, 31 January 2015
Commissioner Kaloko briefs the media on the Status of the African Union Response to Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak in West Africa (ASEOWA) and Campaign efforts to End Child Marriage
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 28 January 2015: “We are getting optimistic reports from Ministries of Health of the affected countries that mortality and infection rates are declining, in fact Schools will be re-opening in Sierra Leone, Liberia had their senate elections couple of months back and this is impressively very good news “ said H.E. Dr Mustapha Sidiki Kaloko, Commissioner for Social Affairs of the African Union at a media brief today at the AU headquarters. The press conference was held within the framework of the 24th AU Summit.
The commissioner also recognized ASEOWA efforts of deploying the health workers and expressed gratitude to all the support shown in all levels in the fight against the Ebola epidemic. The commissioner updated the press on the African Centre for Disease control and prevention saying that the center is almost a reality because it’s going to happen and will take off in mid-2015.
Subsequently, the Commissioner addressed the issue of child marriage calling on all Africans to join the campaign. He pointed out that the figures for child marriages are very high and in some countries going as high as 70-80% and an average of 34% in the continent.
“We need to address the issues of children and child marriage is one way of not addressing them. we have initially selected about ten countries among them chad, Burkina Faso, Uganda and Sierra Leone to launch the child marriage campaign which started on 29th May 2014 and it will be ongoing in the whole continent.”
The commissioner concluded that Child marriage directly oversteps on the current African Union policies and frameworks such as Agenda 2063 and this cannot be allowed to progress. The press conference ended with a question and answers session that gave the opportunity for the journalists to gather more knowledge and information about the activities of the AUC.
Commissioner Aisha addresses the Press on Enhancing Women’s Participation and Representation in Decision Making Structures in Africa
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, January 2015 : H.E. Dr Aisha Laraba Abdullahi, Commissioner for Political Affairs of the African Union on 28th January 2015 briefed the media on enhancing women’s participation and representation in Decision making structures in Africa.
The commissioner exhaustively discussed important structures in order to successfully enhance women’s empowerment and representation in Africa. This includes a gender sensitive Constitution, a gender responsive legal and institutional framework for promoting women’s participation and representation. Political leadership and commitment at the highest level of government has been found to be critical.
Furthermore, Commissioner Abdullahi emphasized on gender sensitive and gender responsive policies, strategies and programs. To achieve this, she said it is necessary to have gender machineries’ such as a dedicated ministry and gender desks in various public institutions. The Commissioner encouraged the concept of organized women’s movement working in close collaboration with civil society and the media engaging in lobby, advocacy for women’s empowerment and gender equality.
“Socio-economic empowerment of women is also key in enhancing of women’s participation and representation in decision-making process: underscored the Commissioner for Political Affairs. In addition, she highlighted the importance of mentorship and leadership guardians especially for the younger women coming up.
Friday, 30 January 2015
Thursday, 29 January 2015
“This Summit is crucial and a turning point in many ways”, said the AUC Deputy Chairperson to the press
Addis Ababa, 28th January 2015. Mr. Erastus Mwencha, Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) addressed continental and international journalists today 28 January 2015 within the framework of the ongoing 24th AU summit. “This Summit is crucial and a turning point in many ways,” said the AUC Deputy Chairperson.
During the press conference, Mr. Mwencha stressed on the fact that this Summit is going to be very strategic for the “Africa we want” as there will be some important activities taking place in the margins of the 24th AU Summit notably the launch of the African Union. Agenda 2063 which is a framework developed by Africans and a roadmap that will help to transform Africa’s economies in the next 50 years.
The Deputy Chairperson further underlined that the Agenda 2063 framework document has received contributions from the different classes of the African society and will be an input to the global post 2015 development agenda.
He recalled that the year 2014 has been a very busy and challenging year for Africa. “In fact, the Continent faced some crises like the Ebola outbreak, the drop in the price of oil, the onset of radicalism and extremism among others. Mr Mwencha however expressed satisfaction to the fact that that Africa was able to gather as one in solidarity to fight the Ebola epidemic that is now being contained.
The AUC Deputy Chairperson highlighted the progress made by Africa in the domain of peace and security under the African peace and security architecture which has facilitated the rapid response to conflicts within the continent.
The AUC Deputy Chairperson further pointed out that this year has been dedicated for the empowerment of African women, “women represent over 50 per cent of the population. To that effect, “Africa will be able to take advantage of its demographic dividend,” he noted.
The issue of alternative sources of financing was raised among others by the AUC Deputy Chairperson. He underscored the need for Africa to be able to fund its own programs so as to contribute fully to the development agenda of the continent. “Once this is done effectively, then Africa shall be able to achieve its objectives....., one of which is silencing the guns by 2020”, underscored Deputy Chairperson Mwencha.
1907 Historic photo: Sir Winston Churchill (1874 – 1965) while visiting the royal palace (Lubiri) for the Kabaka or King of Buganda Kingdom, located on Mengo Hill, Kibuga,Kampala, Kyaddondo County. “A generation which ignores its history has no past— and no future” ~ Robert A. Heinlein (1973). PM Winston Churchill was an inspirational statesman, writer, orator and leader who led Britain to victory in the Second World War.—
African Union Commission (AUC) Launches Implementation Strategy and Roadmap to Transform African Agriculture
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia–January 28, 2015– On the evening of Tuesday 27 January 2015, the Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture (DREA) of the African Union (AU) in collaboration with the NEPAD Agency, officially unveiled the Iimplementation Strategy and Roadmap (IS&R) meant to facilitate the operationalisation of the 2014 Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Africa Agricultural Growth and Transformation for shared prosperity and improved livelihoods, that was adopted at the 23rd Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, in June 2014.
The IS&R is a response to the Assembly’s request to develop an implementation strategy and roadmap that facilitates translation of the provisions of the Declaration into concrete results and impact. The IS&R was officially launched by H.E ValmaVall Mint Soueinea, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, and the Chairperson of the AU Executive Council , who commended the efforts of the AUC and NEPAD Agency in producing the document.
Opening the launching ceremony, AUC Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture H.E. Rhoda Peace Tumusiime said, “We took advantage of the 10thAnniversary of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) to take stock of the experiences and use lessons learnt to chart the way forward. We have highlighted the importance of agriculture and mobilized citizens, stakeholders and partners to enhance cooperation, collaboration and partnerships to exploit the full potential that agriculture offers.”
The Commissioner added that, “It is one thing to make commitments and another thing to deliver on them. Weare committed to working towards making concrete changes in our people’s lives through the transformation of Africa’s agriculture and its accelerated growth in the AU Member States.”
Also speaking at the launching ceremony H.E. Dr. Ibrahim Mayaki, Chief Executive Officer of the NEPAD Agencyemphasised on the crucial significance of leadership, integration, partnerships and accountability to realise the visions on agricultural transformation in Africa. “Faster and more inclusive growth is essential if African citizens at all levels are to achieve the AU’s aspiration of prosperity”, said Dr.Mayaki.
The Malabo Declaration adopted seven key commitments comprising the 2025 vision and goals of Africa Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation (3AGT);
i. Recommitment to the Principles and Values of the CAADP Process
ii. Commitment to Enhancing Investment Finance in Agriculture
iii. Commitment to Ending Hunger in Africa by the year 2025
iv. Commitment to agriculture contributing to poverty reduction at least by half by the year 2025, through Inclusive Agricultural Growth and Transformation
v. Commitment to tripling Intra-African Trade in Agricultural commodities and services, by the year 2025
vi. Commitment to Enhancing Resilience of Livelihoods and Production Systems to Climate Variability and other related risks
vii. Commitment to Mutual Accountability to Actions and Results
Tuesday, 27 January 2015
Commissioner Fatima Haram Acyl of Trade and Industry address the Press
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, January 2015 – “Africa must pay attention to its industrial sector in order to benefit from its vast natural resources. This is a vision that has been set for the agenda 2063” said the Commissioner for Trade and Industry of the African Union, H.E Mrs. Fatima Haram Acyl during a press conference today, 26 January 2015 at the margins of the 24th AU Summit.
The Commissioner noted that the Department of Trade and Industry of the AU has made progress in promoting intra-African trade. She pointed out that the AU Commission in collaboration with the RECs is working hard to promote the free movement of people and goods within the continent.
She further announced that the Commission is striving towards providing a common AU passport to facilitate a continental free movement of people across the borders of the respective African countries which will enhance trade within Africa.
The Commissioner underscored the need for the statistics of the free trade areas to be reviewed so as to provide African business men with updated data to enable them do their business transaction and networking efficiently.
Monday, 26 January 2015
The African Union Commission and the Government of the Republic of Cameroon launch the French edition of the African Union Handbook
Addis Ababa, 26th January 2015 –The second edition of the African Union Handbook 2015 was launched today Monday 26 January 2014 by H.E Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) and H.E Mr. Pierre Moukoko Mbonjo, Minister of External Relations of the Republic of Cameroon. The ceremony took place in the margins of the 26thOrdinary Session of the Executive Council of the African Union at the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The AU handbook is jointly published English and in French by the African Union Commission and the Government of New Zealand in collaboration with the Cameroonian Government and distributed to all AU Member States.
During the launching of the book, the AUC Chairperson expressed appreciation to the Cameroonian Government for making available the French version of the Handbook, while wishing that efforts will continue to ensuring that the Handbook is translated into the other working languages of the African Union.
The handbook aims to provide a detailed presentation of the structures and Organs of the African Union so as to create awareness on the activities and programs of the Commission with the view to familiarize the organization to its many stakeholders including the civil society. According to the Minister of External Relations of Cameroon, the AU Handbook is “a priceless manual for anyone who wants to be familiar with the work of the African Union as well as its Member States.” Minister Moukoko Mbondjo added that “Cameroon is happy to have contributed in the production of the French version of the AU Handbook and hoped that this publication will be useful to the African Union”.
The 2015 edition of the African Union handbook is available in English and in French on the AU website: www.au.int .