Friday, 18 April 2014

The 4th Joint Retreat between the PRC and AUC: Two Institutions, One Agenda

Hawassa, Ethiopia April 2014 – “To achieve the vision of AU Agenda 2063, we will have to work together spurred by the values of solidarity, self-reliance and united in our diversity”, says African Union Commission’s Chairperson, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.

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Addressing Ambassadors of AU member states accredited to the African Union at the opening session of the 4th Joint Retreat between the Permanent Representatives’ Committee (PRC) and the African Union Commission (AUC), held in Hawassa, Ethiopia on the 14 and 15 April 2014, within the context of working together towards continental integration, the AUC Chairperson highlighted that Africans are all bound by the abiding commitment to the pan African vision of building “an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena”.

“We are gathered here as the African Union Commission and the Permanent Representative Committee of Ambassadors accredited to the African Union to jointly take stock of how far the continent has progressed on its integration and development agenda”, said Dr. Dlamini Zuma, stressing that participants to the retreat will collectively identify strengths, and challenges, and consider ways to move the process forward.

Dr. Dlamini Zuma recalled that the very reason for the establishment of the Organisation Description: _DSC0241of African Unity (OAU), 50 years ago on 25 May 1963 in Addis Ababa Ethiopia, was to liberate Africa from the dehumanizing yoke of slavery, dispossession, colonialism and apartheid. “The vision, solidarity, commitment and bravery of our forebears triumphed and because of them we are here today”, she stressed, explaining that African forebears also strived for continental unity based on the full political, social and economic integration and development of Africa. “Although Africa has made strides towards the fulfillment of its integration, much more still remains to be done, said the AUC Chairperson.

Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma underscored that “Our interdependency and diversity means we need to invest in all our people, empower all the women; ensure that all girls and boys attend schools, and that we develop our young people”. “It also requires dependable infrastructure to build our economies” said the AUC Chairperson, adding that integrated infrastructure development is one of the most important investments for economic transformation, the promotion of intra-African trade and for investment and integration.

Co-chairing the 4th PRC/AUC retreat, Mr. Hamadi Meimou, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and Chairperson of the PRC, highlighted some requirements and challenges faced, and put the stress on the urgent need to identify the solutions to an accelerated integration agenda. 
The 4th AUC/PRC retreat delegation, including notably the Deputy Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Mr Erastus Mwencha; AUC Commissioners; AU Ambassadors, Members of the Permanent Representatives Committee; as well as AU senior managers, was warmly welcomed by the Mayor and city authorities of Hawassa and by the President and authorities of the regional state of Southern Nations, Nationalities and People of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Mr. Dessie Dalkie.

Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, CEO of NEPAD Agency facilitated the retreat’s sessions that acknowledged    the complementarity roles of the AUC and the PRC in the pursuit of the continental agenda.