The 29th African Union Summit opened on Tuesday 27th June 2017 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The theme of the meeting is “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investments in the Youth” and it opened with the 34th Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives’ Committee (PRC) at the African Union Headquarters.
This summit is not only the first summit for the new Commission of the AU, which was elected in Jan 2017, but is also the first summit with the full participation of all the fifty five African countries, after the admission of the Kingdom of Morocco during the 28th AU Assembly in January this year – historic to say the least!
Speaking for the first time to the PRC as the Chairperson of the AU Commission, H.E. Mr. Moussa Faki Mahamat emphasized the relationship between the PRC and the new Commission and the necessity in addressing these relations – a result of dealing with emergencies and identifying strategic lines of action – which raises the need to change certain crucial aspects of the Commission’s methods. He also highlighted key issues for consideration in the PRC meeting: In addition to migration, peace and security; and implementation of the decision of the 0.2% levy on imports of eligible products in order to ensure in predictable, sustainable and equitable financing of the AU, also for consideration is the reform of the African Union, for which the follow-up of the implementation, in accordance with the July 2016 and January 2017 summit decisions, has been jointly entrusted to the Presidents Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Idriss Deby Itno of Chad and Alpha Conde of Guinea.
H.E. Mrs. Fatoumata Kaba Sidibe, Chairperson of the PRC and Ambassador of the Republic of Guinea, appreciated the efforts of the AUC Chairperson in finding solutions to the crises and conflicts on the continent, lauding recent missions to the United Nations and areas of tension. She also called upon members of the PRC to take clear decisions and make precise recommendations to ably assist the policy organs do their work.
She called on the PRC members to be comprehensive and clear when taking decisions and recommendations on the various reports, so as to facilitate the work of the policy organs, noting that the PRC report will take the form of draft decisions on matters relating to strategic issues, the AU theme of this year, and peace and security in Africa. (The full speech of the Chairperson of the PRC is on the AU website www.au.int)
Over the course of three days, the 34th Session of the PRC will consider the reports of the various activities of their sub-committees, reports of the AU organs and their activities. The PRC will further exchange views on the draft agenda, as well as the draft Decisions and Declarations of the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council, and those of the 29th AU Assembly, before adopting its report.
The PRC session is one of three statutory meetings of the AU Summit, which include the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council, and the 29th AU Assembly.
The 34th Ordinary Session of the PRC will conclude on 29th June 2017, with the adoption of its report to be submitted to the 31st Ordinary Session of the Executive Council scheduled to hold from 30 June to 1 July 2017.
Story & Pictures Courtesy of the African Union Commission Website