The 25th of May, 2021 marks the 58th anniversary of the African Union. Africa Day is celebrated yearly to mark Africa’s willingness to liberate itself from foreign dictatorship to form a liberation movement.
The African Union initially referred to as the Organization of African Unity was founded on 25th May 1963. It is an African Continental Union consisting of 55 member states to build a united and strong Africa.
The AU has its headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. A semi-annual meeting of the heads of state and governments of the 55 member states is held, where issues are discussed. Decision-making is then left to the AU Assembly of Heads of States and Government. Some of these decisions include setting policies for the Union, monitoring the implementation of policies, considering membership requests into the Union, and so on.
In addition to the tasks set for the African Union, there are specific goals, objectives and progress made that this article aspires to communicate.
Goals Of The African Union
The Union has a vision of ‘An integrated, Prosperous and Peaceful Africa, driven by its citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena.” And to that effect, it has the following goals:
- To Defend the territorial integrity, sovereignty, and Independence of the African Union’s member states.
- To accomplish unity and solidarity between African countries and their people.
- To promote peace, security, and stability of the African continent.
- Stimulate political and socio-economic stability of the African continent.
- Enhance democratic principles and institutions, good governance, and popular participation.
- Promote sustainable development economically, socially, culturally, and integrate African economies.
- Encourage international cooperation.
- Achieve the necessary conditions that will enable the African continent to play its rightful role in international negotiations and the global economy.
- Following African Charter on Human and people’s rights, the promotion and protection of every human right are observed.
- Partner with relevant international partners to eradicate preventable diseases and promote good health on the African continent.
- Invite and embolden the full participation of the African Diaspora as an important part of our Continent, in the building of the African Union.
Aside from having many goals, the African Union also has many objectives. Some of them have been listed in the following subheading.
Objectives Of the African Union
The union has the following objectives guiding its operations:
- To intensify and harmonize Africa’s cooperation and efforts towards achieving a better life for its people.
- To enhance unity and solidarity between African states.
- To eradicate all forms of colonialism in Africa.
- To defend Africa’s territorial integrity, sovereignty, and independence.
- To accelerate international cooperation, and having due regard for the laws protecting human rights and protection.
Progress Made So Far
Despite the numerous challenges facing the union, the African Union has managed to achieve some of the goals set out in its establishment. The goals achieved include:
- The extent of violent conflict has reduced due to the implementation and signing of Peace agreements between countries not at peace or have a history of decades of conflict and instability.
- The African Union has been successful in deploying observers in general elections in every member state to prevent post-election conflicts.
- The African Union also deploys observers to post-conflict countries to assess the needs of the people and how they can prioritize aiding them.
- The African Union plans strategically, politically, to support and authorize the Peace and Security Council in the fight against Boko Haram.
The African Union has for long fought for the unity of Africa and the collective development of the continent.
More progress would have been made if not for the lack of funds for the African Union. The high level of donor dependency prevents the African Union from strategically implementing policies for the growth of the African continent.
The Union hopes that by achieving every goal and objective, Africa becomes the best place to live even for the ordinary man.
Hopefully, we get to have an Integrated, prosperous and Peaceful Africa.
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