On occasion of the celebration of the 7th Anniversary of the 6th Region of Africa in Canada
Ladies and gentlemen
I am honoured to be part of this celebration of the 56th Anniversary of the African Union and the 7th Anniversary of the African Union Diaspora, also known as the 6th Region of Africa. I want to thank you for extending invitation to the Commission, this shows your commitment to join hands with the other regions of Africa to run along with the vision for the Africa We Want by 2063. I therefore, bring you greetings from the chairperson of the African Union Commission H.E Dr. Moussa Faki Mahamat. He extends fraternal greetings of love, peace and hope.
Speaking on behalf of the Commission, the 6th region of Africa is one of the building blocks of the African Union and therefore central to the implementation of the African Vision of ‘’an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena’’. You inviting the Commission to this event justifies our cooperate desire and a signal that Africa can no longer postpone taking action on its development agenda.
The willingness from the diaspora to work together with the people back home to build a prosperous and united Africa based on shared values and a common destiny is testament to this fact. Moreover, it is known that the Africa Dispora have some of the brightest minds and brains of the continent. Our cooperate steps towards a prosperous Africa is well-outlined in our people centred and long-term development blue-print Agenda 2063 that 3 our Heads of State and Governments adopted in January 2015.
Agenda 2063, “The Africa We Want”, charts the transformative path for inclusive growth and sustainable development of our continent, which will enable us to deliver on the rising aspirations of the African citizens and the world beyond.
The Summit was attended by Chad, Congo, Djibouti, Rwanda, South Africa, Somalia, Ethiopia- as chair of IGAD, South Sudan, Kenya, Uganda and Nigeria. In addition to the Chairperson of the African Union Commission.
The key recommendation of the Summit held in Cairo to the AU Peace and Security Council, is to extend by three months the timeline given to Sudan’s Transitional Military Council (TMC) to implement the measures outlined in the PSC communique of 15 April 2019. The said communique condemned and rejected the seizure of power by Sudanese military and demanded that the Sudanese military step aside and hand over power to a transitional civilian-led political authority within 15 days (by 30 April 2019). The communique also stated that if the military fails to do so by the deadline stipulated, the PSC would suspend SUDAN from participation in all AU activities. The provisions of the PSC communique are in line with the AU legal framework on Unconstitutional Changes of Government – which in its definition includes a military coup d’etat. This is what has transpired in Sudan- a military takeover of power, suspension of the constitution and the formation of a military-led transitional government. Any decision by the AU-PSC on 30 April to extend the timeline for Sudan’s TMC to transfer power to a civilian authority as per the recommendation of the Summit in Cairo would be in stark contravention of the AU’s own normative and legal framework on military coups and unconstitutional changes of government. Moreover, it would send the wrong political signal to the people of Sudan and severely undermine the credibility and relevance of the continental body.
The protestors remain guided by the strong desire for a civilian-led transition government that will pave the way for a democratic transformation of the county. Hence, the extension of the duration granted the transitional military council will undermine the objective of the popular uprising, which the council has recognized, in the press statement on 29 April 2014, is a result of governance deficiencies and called upon States to deepen the culture of democracy, accountability, inclusiveness, participation, reconciliation and good governance to foster peace and stability on the continent.
While President El-Sisi currently holds the chairmanship of the African Union and it is in this capacity that he convened the Cairo Summit, he lacks credibility among Sudanese people.
The African Union must take a principled stance on 30 April 2019 that is aligned with its norms and values as reflected in its own instruments and must demonstrate to Sudanese citizens and the world that it is an institution that is relevant to the people of this continent and supports their aspirations for democratic governance, peace and prosperity. This is a critical moment for the African Union. The peace and Security Council must stand on the right side of history. The women, men and children of Sudan who have been peacefully protesting on the streets for close to five months for their human rights, political freedom and most of all for basic human dignity will look to the AU PSC on 30 April 2019 to live up to the values and norms they espouse.
The Youth Division is the division responsible for Africa’s Youth Agenda at the African Union Commission (AUC). The Division is in charge of addressing issues concerning: • Youth policy development: the African Youth Charter; • Legal frameworks for Youth development; • Programmatic framework: African Youth Decade Plan of Action (2009–2018); • Youth capacity building and enhancing employability skills through the African Union Youth Volunteers Corps (AU-YVC); • Partnership building and resource mobilization; • Promoting Youth participation through activities such as organizing Youth Forums and Celebrating the African Youth Day;
The African Union Commission is hosting the 2nd Pan Africa Youth Forum under the theme “African Youth Unite for Action – Bridging the Gap & Reaching out to Young Africans”
The forum is convened as part of the launch of the “African Youth Unite for Action – Bridging the Gap & Reaching out to Young Africans” Project, an exciting new initiative of the African Union Chairperson which aims to accelerate action on African youth priorities by directly reaching millions of young Africans in the four key areas of Education, Employment, Entrepreneurship and Engagement. The event will create spaces for youth to co-create solutions in these key areas which will contribute to the implementation of the initiative in the next couple of years.
This is therefore to call upon dedicated, visionary and proactive young Africans with experience and/or expertise in the areas outlined above to join the co-creation sessions and represent the youth cohort of the continent in high-level decision making processes.
WHEN AND WHERE?
The Pan African Youth Forum will be held from the 24th to 27th of April, 2019, at the African Union Commission Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
WHAT IS EXPECTED OF YOU AT THE FORUM?
Participants are expected to engage in an intensive four-day meeting to propose workable solutions which will directly uplift millions of youth on the continent. In addition, participants will undergo a 15-hour virtual capacity building in the run-up to the Pan African Youth Forum. The programme is broadly outlined thus:
• Capacity Building sessions (15 virtual hours) – One week to the forum
• Pan African Youth Congress – Day 1
• Thematic Co-Creation Summit – Day 2 & 3
• Commitment Summit by youth development stakeholders – Day 4
• Marketplace on best practices in Africa in the key priority youth areas – Days 1 – 4
WHAT IS IN IT FOR YOU?
You will be part of a life-changing engagement of networking, learning, and creating long-term solutions to youth issues with other young leaders like yourself, and in partnership with the African Union Commission and its development partners. You will meaningfully contribute to the development trajectory of young people on the continent for years to come.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
Participants will include youth experts from member states, civil societies and/or youth networks. Women, refugees/displaced persons, and persons living with a disability are strongly encouraged to apply.
• Do you have experience or expertise in one or more of the thematic areas?
• Are you a citizen of an AU Member State with a valid passport?
• Are you between the ages of 15-35?
• Can you communicate in one or more of the AU official languages (English, French, Portuguese, and Arabic)?
• Are you passionate about Africa’s development and have taken steps to contribute to achieve the Africa We Want?
• Are you committed to long-term engagement to drive the initiative in your own spaces?
If you match all the criteria listed above, then this is for you! Apply below: APPLY NOW
The aim of the side event is to highlight how Women and Youth inclusiveness, Economic and Equality Empowerment are the keys to Eradicate Poverty, Curb Human Trafficking, and Achieve Sustainable Development Goals.
The side event discussion addressed the following critical areas: Economic empowerment of the marginalized poor people, challenges to social inclusion, the effect of women and youth economic empowerment, and gender inequality on poverty in Africa. Poverty is the common root of Africa human trafficking, abuse of women, victimization of the vulnerable and the marginalized people in need. In addition, the side event explored ways we can strengthen empowerment through economic, education, political, fiscal, social inclusion, social protection policies because strengthening women and youth economic empowerment to be agents of change is the prerequisite for poverty eradication and the achievement of all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Black History Month:
February 1, 2018
“Today we begin Black History Month, a time to honour and celebrate the many achievements and contributions that Black Canadians have made to our country.
“The theme for this year’s Black History Month is ‘Black Canadian Women: Stories of Strength, Courage and Vision’. Jean Augustine, Viola Desmond, Michaëlle Jean, Jully Black, Afua Cooper – these are just a few women of African descent who have shaped Canada into the country it is today. Yet all too often their stories go untold.
“Earlier this week, the Government of Canada announced that Canada will officially recognize the UN International Decade for People of African Descent. This International Decade, which spans from 2015 to 2024, is an opportunity to highlight and celebrate the important contributions that Black Canadians have made to Canadian society.
“The International Decade also offers a framework to better address the very real and unique challenges that Black Canadians face. By working together, we can combat anti-black racism and discrimination, and deliver better outcomes for Black Canadians.
“This month, I invite all Canadians to take part in community events for Black History Month, and learn more about the vital role that Black Canadians have played – and continue to play – in shaping the diverse, compassionate, and prosperous country we know today.”