On the occasion of the 56th anniversary of the creation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), the forerunner of the African Union, the African Union has restated its commitment to the successful realization of the vision of “The Africa We Want” as enshrined in Agenda 2063, the blueprint for transforming Africa into the global powerhouse of the future.
Set to be achieved within a 50-year period (2013–2063), Agenda 2063 is the continent’s preeminent, ambitious framework whose major goal is simply delivering inclusive and sustainable development in Africa; it is “a concrete manifestation of the pan-African drive for unity, self-determination, freedom, progress and collective prosperity pursued under Pan-Africanism and African Renaissance.”
“On this auspicious occasion as we celebrate the 56th anniversary of the birth of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), precursor of the African Union, I am pleased to convey to each and everyone of you this renewed message of faith in the realization of our common vision, namely “The Africa We Want”, as enshrined in Agenda 2063,” said Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat, on the occasion of 2019 Africa Day commemoration.
Mahamat said after centuries of domination, oppression, enslavement and slave exploitation, Africa had woken up and was now aware of “its strength and the underlying force behind that strength: its dignity in unity.” However, he said, Africa’s independence and unity would only come about when “every African lives in peace, has free access to quality universal education, to full physical and mental health, to decent and remunerative job, to social and cultural development, to good democratic governance in the strict respect of his fundamental rights.”
The 2019 commemoration is under the theme: “Year of Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement in Africa,” which Mahamat said sufficiently demonstrated “the acuteness of our challenges and the urgent and imperative need to work together to ensure to all African citizens the inalienable right to live free, dignified and be productive.”
“The humanitarian organizations which I commend and thank for the assistance they continue to provide to the African refugees and returnees are called upon to redouble their efforts. In this connection, the States concerned should, in dignity and freedom, create the necessary and appropriate conditions for all their citizens to return home. This occasion is also a timely opportunity to thank host countries for their commendable efforts and sacrifices in favour of refugees,” urged Mahamat.
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